Participant Use Data File

The Participant Use Data File (PUF) is a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliant data file containing cases submitted to the ACS NSQIP. The PUF contains patient level, aggregate data and does not identify hospitals, healthcare providers, or patients. The intended purpose of this file is to provide researchers at participating sites with a data resource they can use to investigate and advance the quality of care delivered to the surgical patient through the analysis of cases captured by ACS NSQIP. The PUF is provided at no additional cost to employees (Surgeons, Surgical Clinical Reviewers, researchers, etc.) of ACS NSQIP participating hospitals.

The 2013 PUF contains 651,940 cases submitted from 435 participating sites. Six other separate PUFs containing 152,490 cases submitted in 2005 and 2006 by 121 sites, 211,407 cases submitted in 2007 by 183 sites, 271,368 cases submitted in 2008 from 211 participating sites, 336,190 cases submitted in 2009 by 237 sites, 363,431 cases submitted in 2010 by 258 sites, and 442,149 cases submitted in 2011 by 315 sites, and 543,885 cases submitted in 2012 by 374 sites are also available. Only cases included in corresponding Semi-annual Report(SAR) risk-adjustment calculations are in these datasets. For background information on the case inclusion/exclusion criteria and the data collection and submission processes, please visit the ACS NSQIP Program Specific page. Each case contains between 240 and 305 HIPAA compliant variables. Variable formats, variable definitions (which can change from year to year), and other supporting information are available in the PUF User Guides for: 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, and 2005-06. The data files are made available in a delimited text, SAS, and SPSS file type.

The corresponding 2013 Procedure Targeted PUF for Vascular and Colectomy cases is available as well. The 2013 Vascular PUF contains 4,292 cases from 83 participating sites. The 2013 Colectomy PUF contains 21,505 cases from 154 participating sites. The original Vascular PUF, containing 655 cases submitted from 71 participating sites in 2011-2012, and the original Colectomy PUF, containing 16,981 cases submitted from 121 participating sites in 2011-12, are also available. For background information on the case inclusion/exclusion criteria and the data collection and submission processes, please visit the Program Specific page. Variable formats, variable definitions, and other supporting information are available in the User Guides for: 2013, 2012, 2011. Each case in the Targeted PUF files can be merged with a case in the time-corresponding-standard PUF using a key-matching-variable. The data files are made available in a delimited text, SAS, and SPSS file type.

To request a copy of the PUF, individuals (data recipients) must agree to comply with the terms and conditions set forth in the Data Use Agreement, provide contact information, and complete a short online questionnaire. Once the information provided by the data recipient is received and processed by ACS NSQIP staff, a website address will be submitted electronically to the data recipient. The data recipient will then have 10 days (240 hours) to visit the website and download the data file.

Request Data Set

For questions or comments about the Participant Use Data File please contact Brian Matel at bmatel@facs.org.