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Preferred Reporting Items for Complex Sample Survey Analysis (PRICSSA)

Background & Rationale

Most population-level surveys, like HINTS, utilize probability-based samples and complex sampling procedures that employ design features such as stratification, cluster sampling, and unequal probabilities of selection. Such samples deviate from simple random samples (SRS) with important analytic implications for both point estimates and variance estimation for modeling outcomes. Assessment of the peer-reviewed literature has identified analytic and reporting errors within papers using complex sample survey data. Publications containing these incorrect analyses could yield results that misinform well-intended policymakers, researchers, and practitioners.

The Preferred Reporting Items for Complex Sample Survey Analysis (PRICSSA) is an itemized checklist to guide researchers publishing analyses using survey data that used complex sampling procedures. PRICSSA was developed to increase consistency in reporting and aid in reducing analytic and reporting errors, thereby increasing transparency and reproducibility. The PRICSSA checklist recommends authors report information on a variety of survey characteristics, essential analytic information, as well as making software code publicly available to reviewers and readers. Widespread adoption of PRICSSA will help improve the quality of secondary analyses of complex sample survey data and promote scientific rigor and reproducibility.

PRICSSA Checklist for HINTS

Compliance to PRICSSA-related content can be facilitated by user providers by identifying survey information, such as survey design and variables, in a manner that is clear and accessible. The PRICSSA Checklist for HINTS summarizes the information necessary for researchers to implement PRICSSA guidelines when using all publicly available HINTS datasets between 2003 and 2023.

Matrix of PRICSSA Checklist Items for HINTS Cycles 1-6 (XLSX 14.3 KB)

The EQUATOR (Enhancing the QUAlity and Transparency Of health Research) Network

PRICSSA is modeled after checklists that have been widely adopted for other research designs, including PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses), CONSORT (Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials), STROBE (Strengthening the Reporting of Observational Studies in Epidemiology) and CARE (for CAse REports). PRICSSA is now included as a guideline in The EQUATOR NETWORK, an international initiative that seeks to improve the reliability and value of published health research literature by promoting transparent and accurate reporting and wider use of robust reporting guidelines.

Andrew B Seidenberg, Richard P. Moser, Brady T. West. Preferred Reporting Items for Complex Sample Survey Analysis (PRICSSA), Journal of Survey Statistics and Methodology, 2023; smac040,