Measuring Resource Utilization: A Systematic Review of Validated Self-Reported Questionnaires

Medicine (Baltimore). 2016 Mar;95(10):e2759. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000002759.


A variety of methods may be used to obtain costing data. Although administrative data are most commonly used, the data available in these datasets are often limited. An alternative method of obtaining costing is through self-reported questionnaires. Currently, there are no systematic reviews that summarize self-reported resource utilization instruments from the published literature.The aim of the study was to identify validated self-report healthcare resource use instruments and to map their attributes.A systematic review was conducted. The search identified articles using terms like "healthcare utilization" and "questionnaire." All abstracts and full texts were considered in duplicate. For inclusion, studies had to assess the validity of a self-reported resource use questionnaire, to report original data, include adult populations, and the questionnaire had to be publically available. Data such as type of resource utilization assessed by each questionnaire, and validation findings were extracted from each study.In all, 2343 unique citations were retrieved; 2297 were excluded during abstract review. Forty-six studies were reviewed in full text, and 15 studies were included in this systematic review. Six assessed resource utilization of patients with chronic conditions; 5 assessed mental health service utilization; 3 assessed resource utilization by a general population; and 1 assessed utilization in older populations. The most frequently measured resources included visits to general practitioners and inpatient stays; nonmedical resources were least frequently measured. Self-reported questionnaires on resource utilization had good agreement with administrative data, although, visits to general practitioners, outpatient days, and nurse visits had poorer agreement.Self-reported questionnaires are a valid method of collecting data on healthcare resource utilization.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Chronic Disease / economics*
  • Female
  • Health Care Rationing / statistics & numerical data*
  • Health Resources* / economics
  • Health Resources* / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Self Report*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires