Nurse Effects on Non-response in Survey-Based Biomeasures

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Collecting biological data in representative surveys is becoming more common due to their potential to inform research and policy. Nevertheless, using nurses to collect these data can lead to unintended effects. In this paper, we investigate how nurses influence the non-response process by looking at five waves of data coming from two surveys in the UK: Understanding Society and the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing. We find that nurses explain between 5 and 14 percent of the variance in non-response to biological data collection. We also find that older nurses are more successful in obtaining cooperation and consent to biological data collection and nurses with more survey experience are more likely to successfully collect blood samples. Finally, we show that including nurse characteristics in non-response weighting models leads to modest changes in population estimates of biological markers.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Social Research Methodology
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2020


  • non-response
  • bio-social research
  • longitudinal data
  • weighting
  • nurse effects


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