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SF-12 Health Survey

Name of Questionnaire

SF-12 Health Survey and SF-12v2 Health Survey


The SF-12v2™ Health Survey is a 12-item subset of the SF-36v2™ that measures the same eight domains of health. It is a brief, reliable measure of overall health status.  It is useful in large population health surveys and has been used extensively as a screening tool


John E. Ware, Jr., PhD


Quality Metric Inc
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Cost & availability

For fee information contact Quality Metric.


Self-administered or given by a trained interviewer in person or by telephone to persons ages 14 and older.

Time to complete

2 to 3 minutes

Number of items

12 items

Domains & categories

8 health domains

Name of categories/domains

Physical functioning
Bodily pain
General health
Social functioning
Mental health

Scaling of items

3 and 5 point Likert scale


Scores by dimension


a. Test-Retest/Reproducibility: Reported 1
b. Internal Consistency: Reported 1
The test-retest reliability of the PCS-12 summary measures was 0.890 in the US and 0.864 in the UK.  Coefficients of 0.760 in US and 0.774 in UK were observed for the MCS-12.  Changes in scores between test and retest averaged less than 1 point for the 2 summary measures in both samples and 85.3% scored at the 2nd administration within the 95% confidence interval of the scores at the first administration for both PCS-12 and MCS-12.


a. Validity: Reported 1
14 validity tests involving physical criteria ranged from 0.43 to 0.93 (median = 0.67).  Relative validity estimates for the Mental Component Summary in 6 tests involving mental criteria ranges from 0.60 to 1.07 (median = 0.97).


Not reported

Minimally important difference

Not reported

Research use

Not reported

Clinical use

Not reported


Translated into more than 50 languages
see Quality Metric website for list:


1. Ware J Jr, Kosinski M, Keller SD. A 12-Item Short-Form Health Survey: construction of scales and preliminary tests of reliability and validity. Med Care 1996; 34:220-33.

2. Gandek B, Ware JE, Aaronson NK, et al. Cross-validation of item selection and scoring for the SF-12 Health Survey in nine countries: results from the IQOLA Project. International Quality of Life Assessment. J Clin Epidemiol 1998; 51:1171-8.

Date of information

February 28, 2008

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