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California Women's Health Survey

The California Women's Health Survey (CWHS) was established in March 1997 to provide information to policy-makers and health professionals about women's health and to serve as a catalyst for innovative solutions that impact the health of California's women and girls. The CWHS is an annual telephone survey that collects information from a sample of approximately 4,000 randomly selected adult women aged 18 years or older on a wide variety of health indicators and health-related knowledge, behaviors, and attitudes.

Participation in the CWHS is completely voluntary and anonymous. Interviews are conducted by trained interviewers following standardized procedures developed by SRG staff and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The survey collects data monthly from a random sample of California adult women living in households with telephones. Quality control procedures are rigorous to ensure a high level of accuracy in the data collected.

Survey Specifics

      • Sponsors: The California Women's Health Survey is coordinated by California Department of Health Care Services and California Department of Public Health, in collaboration with the California Department of Mental Health, the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs and the California Department of Social Services, as well as California Medical Review, Inc., (now known as Lumetra) and the Public Health Institute.
      • Mode of Administration: Telephone interview conducted in English and Spanish.
      • Survey Sample Design: Uses random-digit-dialed probability samples of the adult (aged 18 years and over) female population. The annual statewide sample size is approximately 4,000 participants.
      • Primary Survey Content: The survey consists of a core of demographic and health care access and health insurance coverage questions asked every year. Questions cover topical areas specific to women's health including breast and cervical cancer, mental health, family planning, breastfeeding, chronic illnesses (arthritis, asthma, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis), nutrition and obesity, sexual behavior, sexually transmitted diseases, health information, care giver responsibilities and hormone replacement therapy.
      • Population Targeted: Civilian, non-institutionalized population 18 years of age and older who reside in households with telephones. Persons who do not have telephones or have telephones but are either in institutional settings or cannot be understood over the telephone are excluded.
      • Demographic Data: Age, educational attainment, race/ethnicity, household income, employment status, marital status and sexual orientation.
      • Years Collected: Annually since 1997.
      • Geographic Estimates: Data are weighted to produce State of California estimates. 

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To Request the CWHS Data

If you are interested in obtaining public use data from the California Women's Health Survey:

  1. Fill out the California Women’s Health Survey Data User Agreement Form
  2. Fax the form to (916) 779-0265
  3. Referal to the technical documentation (PDF) for the survey to determine which year(s) to request
  4. Please contact if you have any questions

The CWHS Reports and Publications


California Women's Health Surveys

California Women's Health Survey 1997 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 1998 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 1999 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2000 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2001 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2002 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2003 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2004 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2005 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2006 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2007 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2008 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2009 (PDF)

California Women's Health Survey 2010 (PDF)

CWHS SAS Documentation

CWHS 2011, SAS Dataset Documentation and Technical Report (PDF)

CWHS 2010, SAS Dataset Documentation and Technical Report (PDF)

CWHS 2009, SAS Dataset Documentation and Technical Report (PDF)

CWHS 2007, SAS Dataset Documentation and Technical Report (PDF)

To run simple data analyses on CWHS data by year

This Survey Research Group (SRG) website has the capacity to conduct simple analyses of the California
Women's Health Survey weighted data by survey year: SRG CWHS DATA

Contact Us

For more information, please contact:

Marta Induni, Ph.D.
Public Health Institute
Survey Research Group
1825 Bell Street, Suite 102
Sacramento, CA  95825
Phone: (916) 779-2677
Fax: (916) 779-0265

Upon request, documents found on this site will be made available in Braille, large print, and audiocassette or computer disk. To obtain a copy in one of these alternate formats, please call or write:

Office of Civil Rights
Department of Health Care Services
P. O. Box 997413, MS 0009
Sacramento, CA 95899-7413
711 (California State Relay)

Last modified on: 4/10/2013 4:23 PM