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Digest of Education Statistics: 2011
Digest of Education Statistics: 2011

NCES 2012-001
May 2012

Appendix A.4. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

National Survey on Drug Use and Health

Conducted by the federal government since 1971, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) is an annual survey (since 1991) of the civilian, noninstitutionalized population of the United States age 12 or older. It is the primary source of information on the prevalence, patterns, and consequences of alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drug use and abuse. The survey collects data by administering questionnaires to a representative sample of the population (since 1999, the NSDUH interview has been carried out using computer-assisted interviewing). NSDUH collects information from residents of households, noninstitutional group quarters, and civilians living on military bases. The main results of the NSDUH present national estimates of rates of use, numbers of users, and other measures related to illicit drugs, alcohol, and tobacco products.

Prior to 2002, the survey was called the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (NHSDA). Because of improvements to the survey in 2002, the data from 2002 onward should not be compared with NHSDA data from 2001 and earlier as a method of assessing changes in substance use over time. The 2008 NSDUH screened 142,940 addresses, and 68,740 completed interviews were obtained. The survey was conducted from January through December 2008. Weighted response rates were 89.0 percent for household screening and 74.4 percent for interviewing. The 2005 NSDUH was the first in a coordinated 5-year sample design providing estimates for all 50 states and the District of Columbia for the years 2005 through 2009. Because the 2005 design enables estimates to be developed by state, states may be viewed as the first level of stratification, as well as a reporting variable.

Further information on the 2008 NSDUH may be obtained from

SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies
1 Choke Cherry Road, Room 7-1044
Rockville, MD 20857