This report describes ambulatory care visits to hospital outpatient departments in the United States. Statistics are presented on selected patient and visit characteristics.
The data presented in this report were collected from the 1996 National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NHAMCS). NHAMCS is part of the ambulatory care component of the National Health Care Survey that measures health care utilization across various types of providers. NHAMCS is a national probability survey of visits to hospital outpatient and emergency departments of non-Federal, short-stay, and general hospitals in the United States. Sample data were weighted to produce annual estimates.
During 1996, an estimated 67.2 million visits were made to hospital outpatient departments in the United States, about 25.4 visits per 100 persons. Overall, visits rates did not vary by age. Females and black persons had higher rates of visits than males and white persons, respectively. There were an estimated 6.8 million injury--related outpatient department visits during 1996.