4840.0 - Microdata: Patient Experiences in Australia, 2016-17 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 12/04/2018   
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TableBuilder files are released in accordance with the conditions specified in the Statistics Determination section of the Census and Statistics Act 1905 (CSA). This ensures that confidentiality is maintained whilst enabling micro level data to be released. Microdata is released using methods and systems that protect the confidentiality of people, households, and businesses. For more information about confidentiality, see How ABS keeps your information confidential.

For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.


Data on Patient Experiences in Australia were collected as part of the 2016-17 Multi-Purpose Household Survey (MPHS). The MPHS is a supplement to the monthly Labour Force Survey (LFS) and is designed to collect annual statistics on a small number of self-contained topics. The scope of the LFS is restricted to people aged 15 years and over and excludes members of the permanent defence forces; certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments usually excluded from census and estimated resident populations; overseas residents in Australia; and members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependants). Refer to Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0) for further information regarding the LFS. In addition, the 2016-17 MPHS excluded households in Indigenous Communities and people living in non-private dwellings such as hotels, university residences, students at boarding schools, patients in hospitals, inmates of prisons and residents of other institutions (e.g. retirement homes, homes for persons with disabilities).

Microdata from the Patient Experience (PEx) component of the MPHS survey are available in TableBuilder. The PEx microdata provides information about a range of indicators measuring the experiences of patients with health services in Australia (general practitioners, medical specialists, dental professionals, pathology and imaging tests, emergency departments and hospital admissions), as well as demographic, socio-economic, education and employment characteristics. Information was collected from one person, aged 15 years and over, selected at random in each selected household.

A detailed list of data items is available on the Downloads tab. For more information, see Microdata: Patient Experiences in Australia, 2016-17 (cat. no. 4840.0).


The MPHS is conducted annually with enumeration undertaken over the financial year (July to June). The PEx topic has been collected each year as part of the MPHS since 2009.

The survey reference period for PEx is 12 months prior to the survey interview. The 2016-17 PEx data relate to patients' experience with health services occurring at some time between July 2015 and June 2017.

Data from the 2016-17 PEx topic (in the form of Data Cubes) were released on 14 November 2017. These are available from the Downloads tab in Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2016-17 (cat. no. 4839.0).


The microdata contains finer levels of detail of data items than what is otherwise published in other formats, for example, in Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2016-17 (cat. no. 4839.0). For more information on the level of detail available, see the associated data item list in the Downloads tab of this product.

Steps are taken to confidentialise the data made available on TableBuilder in such a way as to maximise the usefulness of the content while maintaining the confidentiality of respondents selected in the survey. As a result, it may not be possible to exactly reconcile all the statistics produced from the microdata with other published statistics. Further information about the steps taken to confidentialise the microdata is available through the following link: Confidentiality.

Users of MPHS data should also note that all sample surveys are subject to error which can be broadly categorised as either sampling error or non-sampling error.

Sampling error occurs because a sample, rather than the entire population, is surveyed. One measure of the likely difference resulting from not including all dwellings in the survey is given by the standard error. There are about two chances in three that a sample estimate will differ by less than one standard error from the figure that would have been obtained if all dwellings had been included in the survey, and about nineteen chances in twenty that the difference will be less than two standard errors.

Non-sampling error arises from inaccuracies in collecting, recording and processing the data. Every effort is made to minimise reporting error by the careful design of questionnaires, intensive training and supervision of interviewers, and efficient data processing procedures. Non-sampling error also arises because information cannot be obtained from all persons selected in the survey.


The ABS seeks to maximise consistency and comparability over time by minimising changes to the survey. However, sound survey practice requires ongoing development to maintain and improve the integrity of the data. Due to changes in the questionnaire, certain data items from each iteration of the PEx survey are not comparable year to year. For changes between the iterations of the survey please refer to the Data Comparability section of the Explanatory Notes, in Patient Experiences in Australia: Summary of Findings, 2016-17 (cat. no. 4839.0) and for any previous iterations via the past releases tab.

Due to the differences in collection methods and question wording, health data collected in the PEx may not be comparable with data from other ABS health surveys, such as the Australian Health Survey, General Social Survey and Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers.


To aid in the interpretation of the data, detailed information on concepts, definitions, terminology and other technical aspects of the survey can be found in the relevant web pages included with this release.


Microdata products are available to approved users. Users wishing to access the microdata should read the How to apply for Microdata web page, before applying for access through the Registration page. Users should also familiarise themselves with information available via the Microdata Entry Page.

A full list of available microdata and future releases can be viewed via the Available Microdata page.

Patient Experiences in Australia, 2016-17 TableBuilder can be accessed using About TableBuilder.

Any questions regarding access to microdata can be forwarded to microdata.access@abs.gov.au or phone (02) 6252 7714.

The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS handles any personal information that you provide to us.