COVID-19 Screenings at Hospitals by Week From Selected Hospitals

COVID-19 Hospital Data

The National Hospital Care Survey (NHCS), conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), collects data on patient care in hospital-based settings to describe patterns of health care delivery and utilization in the United States. Settings currently include inpatient facilities and emergency departments (ED). The survey collects electronic data, Uniform Bill (UB–04) administrative claims or electronic health records, for all encounters in a calendar year from a nationally representative sample of 608 hospitals. Information collected includes diagnoses, procedures, demographics, discharge status, and patient identifiers (e.g., name and date of birth). Eligible hospitals are in the 50 states and the District of Columbia and include noninstitutional, nonfederal hospitals with six or more staffed inpatient beds. Hospitals are currently being received into the survey.

The NHCS results provided on COVID-19 hospital use are from UB–04 administrative claims data from March 18, 2020 through July 27, 2021 from 39 hospitals that submitted inpatient data and 38 hospitals that submitted ED data. The data used in these figures are considered preliminary, and the results may change with subsequent releases. There will be updates every two months to the data file for the remaining months in 2021. The data are not nationally representative. Even though the data are not nationally representative, they can provide insight on the impact of COVID-19 on various types of hospitals throughout the country.

There are two sets of figures presented on this page, which show results related to COVID-19 screenings. Data are presented for each setting (inpatient and ED) and for each week, by age and sex.

  • A COVID-19 screening encounter is defined by an any listed International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD–10–CM) diagnosis code for either a positive or negative COVID-19 screening result.
    • A confirmed and positive COVID-19 screening is defined by a code of B97.29 or U07.1.
    • The ICD-10-CM codes used to identify a negative COVID-19 screening are dependent on the time period of the encounter. If the encounter occurred prior to April 1, 2020 then ICD-10-CM codes of Z20.828 and Z03.818 identify a negative screening of COVID-19. From April 1, 2020 – September 30, 2020 the ICD-10-CM codes of Z20.828 and Z11.59 were used and from October 1, 2020 – December 31, 2020 the ICD-10-CM code of Z20.828 was used to identify a negative COVID-19 screening. Starting on January 1, 2021 the ICD-10-CM code of Z20.822 identifies a negative COVID-19 screening. In early versions (March 18, 2020 – December 29, 2020) of this figure, a negative COVID-19 screening was identified as codes Z20.828 and Z11.59. The update to the definition was based on updated CDC guidance for coding suspected COVID-19.  See the related links below for coding guidelines.

The first set of figures shows the percentage of all hospital encounters with a COVID-19 screening.

  • 1,964,014 ED encounters and 761,744 inpatient discharges.
  • For weeks where there are less than 30 encounters in the denominator, data are suppressed. In the figure, weeks with suppressed data do not have a corresponding data point on the indicator line.

The second set of figures shows the percentage of COVID-19 screenings that had positive or negative results.

  • 322,584 ED encounters and 207,700 inpatient discharges.
  • For weeks where there are less than 30 encounters in the denominator, data are suppressed. In the figure, weeks with suppressed data do not have a corresponding data point on the indicator line.

Technical Notes

  • Data are not nationally representative.
  • Less than 1% of all encounters were excluded due to missing sex, age, or a diagnosis.
  • Hospitalizations related to childbirth are included in the denominator for females.
  • 10.4% of inpatient discharges were for newborn (ICD–10–CM: Z38) encounters and are excluded.
  • Data represent encounters, not patients.
  • Weeks with less than 30 encounters in the denominator are suppressed.

 

Data Source

The data presented are from the 2020 and 2021 NHCS. The data in these figures are considered preliminary and are not nationally representative. All estimates shown meet the NCHS Data Presentation Standards for Proportions pdf icon[PDF – 1 MB].

The goal of NHCS is to produce national estimates on hospital care and utilization. The survey is designed to produce objective and timely data to assess the health and well-being of the population and the performance and functioning of the health care system. For more details about NHCS, visit the National Hospital Care Survey website.

 

Related Links

Page last reviewed: November 19, 2021