Health statistics and information systems

SAGE Waves 0, 1, 2 & 3

SAGE Wave 0: 2002–2004

A baseline cohort was created during the 2002–2004 World Health Survey (WHS) based on nationally representative sampling frames to select adults aged 18 and older for interview. A total of 70 countries implemented the WHS, including the six SAGE countries: China, Ghana, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa. For these six countries, this round of data collection is also labelled, SAGE Wave 0.

Face-to-face interviews were used to generate a dataset containing 63 445 adults aged 18 years and older, including 18 883 persons aged 50 years and older, in the six SAGE Wave 0 countries.

Sample sizes

All samples were selected from nationally representative frames with a known probability in order to obtain estimates based on general population parameters. The sample sizes drawn were based on feasibility and survey costs. The resulting sample sizes ranged from almost 39 000 in Mexico to 2400 in South Africa.

Sample sizes per country, adults aged 18 years and older

3 993
3 938
9 994
38 746
Russian Federation
4 422
South Africa
2 352

Survey materials

In order to enhance the utility of the World Health Survey, its development, testing and implementation used a modular survey instrument. The intention is that each module may be used as a standalone product in a variety of household survey contexts – and that collaborating countries could select the combination of modules to include based on the policy needs. The standard modules are listed below.

Household questionnaire
  • Roster of all the individuals in the household
  • Household health intervention coverage
  • Health insurance
  • Health expenditure
  • Indicators of permanent income
  • Health occupations
Individual questionnaire
  • Socio-demographics
  • Health state description
  • Health state valuation
  • Risk factors
  • Mortality
  • Coverage of health interventions
  • Health system responsiveness
  • Health system goals and social capital
  • Interviewer observations

Download questionnaires and supporting materials:

Data access

Wave 0 meta- and micro-data, using DDI standards, are available through the online SAGE Data Archive at no cost: to access it, choose “Filter by Topic”; select “World Health Survey (WHS)”, click on country/data of interest, then click on "Microdata request form", and follow the online instructions to obtain data.


The World Health Survey was supported by World Health Organization.