European Health Interview Survey - Access to microdata

European Health Interview Survey (EHIS)

Information on data details relevant for research project proposals

AGE: by 5-year bands (but starting with 15-17, 18-19)

REGION: removed (only NUTS 1 level)

COUNTRY OF BIRTH/CITIZENSHIP: coded into 3 categories (natives, EU citizens and others).

NACE: grouped into 9 sectors

ISCED: only 1-digit level

Description of the dataset

The European Health Interview Survey (EHIS) consists of 4modules on health status, health care use, health determinants and socio-economic background variables. EHIS targets the population aged at least 15 and living in private households.  The 4 modules cover the following topics:

  • Background variables on demography and socio-economic status such as sex, age, education, labour status, etc.
  • Health status such as self-perceived health, chronic conditions, limitation in usual activities, disease-specific morbidity, physical and sensory functional limitations, etc.
  • Health-care use such as hospitalisation, consultations, unmet needs, use of medicines, preventive actions, etc.
  • Health determinants such as height and weight, fruit and vegetable consumption, smoking, alcohol consumption, etc.

The survey is run every 5 years.

The first wave of the survey (EHIS 1) took place between 2006 and 2009 without any binding legal basis. The 17 participating EU Member States conducted the survey in different years:

  • 2006: Austria and Estonia
  • 2007: Slovenia
  • 2008: Belgium, Bulgaria, Czechia, Cyprus, France, Latvia, Malta and Romania 
  • 2009: Greece, Spain, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

Germany also conducted the survey in 2009 but did not grant access to its microdata. The 17 Member States strived towards comparability by making use of a standard questionnaire, guidelines and translation recommendations. They implemented the EHIS modules at national level either as a specific survey or embedded the EHIS modules in an existing national survey, i.e. national health interview survey, labour force survey or other household surveys. EHIS 1 contained around 130 questions and around 340 variables.

The second wave (EHIS 2) took place between 2013 and 2015 in all EU Member States, Iceland and Norway. The survey year for EHIS 2 was as follows:

  • 2013: Belgium and the United Kingdom
  • 2014: Bulgaria, Czechia, Estonia, Greece, Spain, France, Croatia, Italy, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary, Malta, Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Finland and Sweden
  • 2015: Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Iceland and Norway.



Health data belong to special (sensitive) categories of data. Access to microdata on health requires a justification of substantial public interest.