Summary of Changes to the OAS CAHPS Survey Beginning with January 2022 Sample
folder_openSurvey Specifications and Guidelinescalendar_todayPosted December 23, 2021

With recent OMB approval, CMS is ready to move forward with the changes to the OAS CAHPS Survey questionnaire and modes of administration that were documented in the Proposed Rule in July and approved in the Final Rule in November 2021. The purpose of this announcement is to summarize recent changes to the OAS CAHPS Survey. An announcement outlining detailed changes to the materials and questionnaires for each language is forthcoming.

The updated version of the survey and associated protocols, including web modes of administration, will be implemented for the first time with patients included in the sample from the month of January.

Changes to modes of administration and reporting requirements.

  • The Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment and Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment Systems and Quality Reporting Programs Final Rule was published in the Federal Register on November 16, 2021. The Final Rule is available here.
  • Two additional mixed modes: 1) web with mail follow-up of nonrespondents and 2) web with telephone follow-up of nonrespondents have been approved. Including previously approved modes, a total of five modes of survey administration are available beginning in CY 2022.
  • The OAS CAHPS Survey will be linked to reimbursement beginning with CY 2024 for HOPDs and CY 2025 ASCs. Voluntary implementation will continue through CY 2023 for HOPDs and through CY 2024 for ASCs.
  • Another change for ASCs is a reduction in the target number of completes from 300 to 200 completed surveys annually.

Changes to the questionnaire.

  • Two demographic questions were deleted: 1) age (What is your age?) and 2) gender (Are you male or female?). The age and gender data from administrative records will continue to be provided by facilities and will be used for data analysis.
  • New introductory statement before the series of questions in the Discharge and Recovery section (The next questions are about possible outcomes you could have during recovery. Some procedures do not require that you get this information. Please answer based on what you remember.).
  • The response options for questions 15, 17, 19 and 21 changed from a 3-point scale (Yes, definitely; Yes, somewhat; or No) to a 2-point scale (Yes or No).
  • Replacement of two-part question for language spoken at home (Do you speak a language other than English at home? What is that language? ) to a single question similar to other CAHPS Surveys (What language do you mainly speak at home?).
  • Renumbering of questions that followed the two deleted demographic questions and adjustment of skip logic following the revised language question.

Changes to the OMB expiration date.

  • The new OMB expiration date is 11/30/2024. This date change can be made to all surveys administered starting January 1, 2022, including surveys that will continue to use the previous version of the survey but will be implemented in 2022. For example, vendors should use the new expiration date for any surveys that are implemented for the December sample month. Exceptions are allowed if materials were already preprinted with the old expiration date. For more guidance on rolling out the OMB expiration date on OAS CAHPS Survey materials, please see the announcement posted on December 15, 2021, linked here.

Please contact the OAS CAHPS Survey Coordination Team via e-mail at or call toll-free (866) 590-7468, if you have any questions.