NSDUHNational Survey on Drug Use and Health

The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) measures:

  • use of illegal drugs, prescription drugs, alcohol, and tobacco
  • mental disorders, treatment, and co-occurring substance use and mental disorders

The data help to identify substance use and mental illness measures and provide estimates at the national, state, and sub-state level. NSDUH data also help to identify the extent of substance use and mental illness among different sub-groups, estimate trends over time, and determine the need for treatment services.

Population

NSDUH collects data through face-to-face interviews with residents of households who are:

  • US civilians
  • older than 12 years old
  • not institutionalized

This includes people who live in non-institutional group residences, such as shelters, rooming houses, or dormitories, as well as civilians living on military bases. The survey does not include people who are homeless or do not use shelters, military personnel on active duty, or residents of institutional group quarters, such as jails and hospitals.

History

The federal government has conducted the survey since 1971. Over the years, the survey has undergone a series of changes. In 1999, the survey shifted from paper-and-pencil data collection to computer-assisted interviewing (CAI). With CAI, staff administer most questions with audio computer-assisted self-interviewing. This provides a confidential way to answer questions and encourages honest responses.

Also in 1999, the sample design expanded to include all 50 states and the District of Columbia. In 2002, the name of the survey changed from the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse to NSDUH. The survey also began including a $30 incentive for respondents. The most updates are changes to the sampling design (2014) and changes to the questionnaire (2015).

Survey Resources

Latest in NSDUH

Methodology Report | National Survey on Drug Use and Health - April 4, 2018
Methodology Report | National Survey on Drug Use and Health - March 28, 2018
Methodology Report | National Survey on Drug Use and Health - March 28, 2018
Methodology Report | National Survey on Drug Use and Health - March 28, 2018
Methodology Report | National Survey on Drug Use and Health - March 28, 2018