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Dependent for direct-purchase insurance, previous year

Codes and Frequencies

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DPDEPLY indicates whether the respondent had directly-purchased private health insurance coverage as a dependent during the previous year. The interviewer asked whether, at any time during the previous calendar year, anyone in the household was covered by such direct-purchase private insurance, and distinguished between policyholders and dependents covered by the plan through follow-up questions.

Persons who were policyholders for such insurance are identified in the DPOWNLY variable. Up to two household members who were policyholders for privately-purchased health insurance are identified in the DPWHO1 and DPWHO2 variables. Using the DPWHO1, DPWHO2, and LINENO variables, researchers can identify the policyholder(s) whose privately-purchased insurance provided coverage for someone coded as "Yes" in DPDEPLY.

Through programming in IPUMS CPS, other cases were added to the pool of positive responses for DPDEPLY in the 1996-2018 ASEC. If the respondent mentioned dependent coverage on privately-purchased insurance in response to a catchall summary question on "other" health insurance plans (after hearing questions about many specific types of insurance coverage, including privately-purchased insurance), then that person was given a positive response for DPDEPLY in IPUMS CPS.


User Note: For a set of variables that addresses many of the comparability issues in the CPS health insurance measures, see the summary health insurance variables created by the University of Minnesota's State Health Access Data Assistance Center.

Beginning in 2019, only those respondents covered by directly purchased health insurance during the last year were asked if they got that insurance coverage through a household member.

Beginning with the ASEC 2001 survey, the CPS added a verification question (see VERIFY for more information) to ascertain whether respondents who did not acknowledge health insurance coverage of various types in previous questions, actually lacked insurance coverage during the preceding calendar year. Persons who acknowledged health insurance coverage in this verification follow-up question were asked about the types of health insurance coverage they had. In IPUMS CPS, for the ASEC 2001 survey onward, persons who reported dependent coverage for privately-purchased insurance in response to this question were added, through programming, to the pool of positive responses for the DPDEPLY variable. For consistency in results before and after the ASEC 2001 survey, researchers should exclude cases of dependent coverage on privately-purchased insurance that were only identified via the verification question (i.e., exclude cases coded as "Yes" (2) in VERIFY when analyzing the DPDEPLY data).

This variable is comparable for the period from 1996 through 2000.


  • 1996-2018 ASEC: All persons.
  • 2019-2023 ASEC: Persons with direct-purchase private coverage last year.


Years Jan Feb ASEC Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1996 – 2023 - - X - - - - - - - - -



Unharmonized Variables