The survey was conducted through Survey Monkey, with the link distributed primarily through the IAHSS and IAHSS Foundation contact lists, the IAHSS website, and personal outreach by IAHSS Foundation board members.
The received data were vetted by the IAHSS Foundation Board of Directors. Multiple responses were discarded for reasons including, but not necessarily limited to, missing bed counts, outlier data that could not be confirmed, and responses coming from clinics rather than inpatient hospital facilities.
All submissions are kept confidential, and only aggregate data is reported.
There were several limitations associated with the 2022 Crime Survey, including, but not necessarily limited to, the following:
- The 227 responses leave more than 96 percent of hospitals in the United States unaccounted for. Respondents were a self-selected group, and it is possible that sampling bias resulted in this group not being a representative sample of the nation’s hospitals.
- Since responses were for individual hospitals, some hospital systems were represented multiple times.
- The use of bed counts may not be the best indicator of hospital size and population. For example, number of Emergency Department visits, number of employees, hospital square footage, average daily census, and adjusted patient days can also be used to calculate crime rates. Bed counts, however, were the most consistently reported indicator of size and/or population and allow for continuity with previous Crime Surveys.
- Data may have been mis-entered by respondents.
- Respondents may compile data using different definitions. In one example referenced in this report, a hospital reported a large number of aggravated assaults (220). When contacted for confirmation, a representative of the hospital stated that it classifies all assaults on staff as aggravated assaults, even if, by the legal – and UCR – definition, they would be considered simple assaults. This had a noticeable impact on the violent rate crime, which is further explained below.
- With 227 responses, a small number of hospitals reporting a large number of incidents could significantly affect the overall rates of certain crimes. For example, the hospital noted above raised the violent crime rate from 2.2 to 2.5 incidents per 100 beds. Further, the seven facilities reporting the most violent crimes (including that hospital) nearly doubled the overall rate. Without them, the violent crime rate for the remaining 220 hospitals was 1.3. In addition, removing the five hospitals with the most simple assaults would lower the rate from 17.7 to 12.1. Without six outliers in disorderly conducts, the rate for that crime would drop from 56.8 to 30.1. And without two hospitals reporting a disproportionate share of elopements, the rate would decrease from 6.1 to 4.5.