Data Submission Resources

This section provides resources that survey vendors can use to assist in preparing their monthly XML files. The XML Template provides details about every data element included in the header record, patient administrative record, and patient response record. The XML Schema File shows the details of all validation that will be applied to each data element at the time the file is submitted. The OAS CAHPS Website User and Data Submission Manual provides guidance on the OAS CAHPS website functions, XML data file preparation, and file submission.

Resource File
Website User and Data Submission Manual Website User and Data Submission Manual


Sampling Method XML Template XML Schema (XSD) Date Posted
Standard XML File Layout XML Schema File 4/23/18
DSRS XML File Layout XML Schema File 4/23/18
Zero Sampled XML File Layout XML Schema File 4/18/16

NOTE: The XML Templates posted here are the current (2021) versions. The planned XML Templates for 2022 are available under the “Survey Materials” menu tab.

XML Schema Validation Tool

The XML Schema Validation Tool will allow survey vendors to "pretest" their XML files to determine if they will pass many of the validation steps, before actually uploading the file to the Data Coordination Center.  The tests that this application will perform are:

  • Well Formed test - Is your XML file a properly formatted file.
  • Schema Validation - Does your XML file match the XSD Schema.
  • Data element range checks - Do the values for your data elements fall within the acceptable ranges.

Survey vendors can download this tool to their local computer and test their XML files as many times as needed.  The tool will provide results just like the online upload option does, allowing vendors to correct mistakes before actually uploading their file. 

Click here to download the tool to your computer. For security reasons, you will download a Zip file that contains the Validation Tool.  Once the download is complete, browse to the location where you saved the file.  Use your local Zip program to extract the validation tool .EXE file.  You can run the application by double clicking on the .EXE file.

NOTE: The XML Schema Validation Tool will only accept the 2021 versions of the XML Templates and XSL Schema files. The Validation Tool for 2022 is under development and will be available on this webpage in the Spring of 2022. An announcement will be posted when the updated Validation Tool is available.

Data Submission Tips

Here are some tips and suggestions for Survey Vendors uploading XML files to the Data Coordination Center.

  1. When you create the XML data file, include the facility’s CCN number and the sample month and sample year as part of the file name, as shown in the following example. This will make it easy for you to keep the files organized, especially when you have multiple facilities with which you have contracted. An example of a XML file name: ABCFacility_123456_2016_02.xml
  2. If you are uploading multiple XML files individually by adding lines to the upload tool, we recommend that you upload 10 or fewer at one time. If you have more than 10 files, we recommend that you put those files in a single ZIP file and upload the one file.
  3. If you have individual XML files that have large file sizes, we recommend that you ZIP those files. This will decrease the total upload time.
  4. Only XML files should be included in a ZIP file. Do NOT put one ZIP file inside another ZIP file (nested ZIP files).
  5. Do not include comments in your XML data files. XML files containing comments will not validate correctly. It is also important to keep the size of the files as small as possible because this will make the upload and validation process faster.
  6. If you need to upload a "corrected" file to fix an error in previously submitted data, you must upload the entire file, not just the data elements that were corrected.