Treatment Episode Data Set: Admissions (TEDS-A-2015)

Parent Series Details:

The Treatment Episode Data Set -- Admissions (TEDS-A) is a national data system of annual admissions to substance abuse treatment facilities. State laws require substance abuse treatment programs to report their publically-funded admissions to the state. Some states collect only their publically-funded admissions while other states are able to collect their privately-funded admissions from facilities that receive public funding. States then report these data from their state administrative systems to SAMHSA. The resulting data system is referred to as TEDS-A. Thus, TEDS does not include all admissions to substance abuse treatment. It does, however, include that portion that would constitute the public burden for substance abuse treatment.

TEDS-A contains records on admissions aged 12 or older, and includes information on admission demographics (age, sex, race/ethnicity, employment status, etc.) and substance abuse characteristics (substances used, age at first use, route of use, frequency of use, number of prior admissions, etc.). TEDS-A records represent admissions rather than individuals, as a person may be admitted to treatment more than once.

A sister data system, called the Treatment Episode Data Set -- Discharges (TEDS-D), collects data on discharges from substance abuse treatment facilities.


Study Details:

The Treatment Episode Data Set -- Admissions (TEDS-A) is a national census data system of annual admissions to substance abuse treatment facilities. TEDS-A provides annual data on the number and characteristics of persons admitted to public and private substance abuse treatment programs that receive public funding. The unit of analysis is a treatment admission. TEDS consists of data reported to state substance abuse agencies by the treatment programs, which in turn report it to SAMHSA.


A sister data system, called the Treatment Episode Data Set -- Discharges (TEDS-D), collects data on discharges from substance abuse treatment facilities. The first year of TEDS-A data is 1992, while the first year of TEDS-D is 2006.

TEDS variables that are required to be reported are called the "Minimum Data Set (MDS)", while those that are optional are called the "Supplemental Data Set (SuDS)".

Variables in the MDS include: information on service setting, number of prior treatments, primary source of referral, gender, race, ethnicity, education, employment status, substance(s) abused, route of administration, frequency of use, age at first use, and whether methadone was prescribed in treatment. Supplemental variables include: diagnosis codes, presence of psychiatric problems, living arrangements, source of income, health insurance, expected source of payment, pregnancy and veteran status, marital status, detailed not in labor force codes, detailed criminal justice referral codes, days waiting to enter treatment, and the number of arrests in the 30 days prior to admissions (starting in 2008).

Substances abused include alcohol, cocaine and crack, marijuana and hashish, heroin, nonprescription methadone, other opiates and synthetics, PCP, other hallucinogens, methamphetamine, other amphetamines, other stimulants, benzodiazepines, other non-benzodiazepine tranquilizers, barbiturates, other non-barbiturate sedatives or hypnotics, inhalants, over-the-counter medications, and other substances.

Created variables include total number of substances reported, intravenous drug use (IDU), and flags for any mention of specific substances.

Study Scope

Time period: 
Collection date: 
Geographic coverage : 
United States
Unit of observation: 
treatment admissions
Data types: 
administrative records data
The universe for TEDS-A is admissions in calendar year 2015 that were received and processed through November 1, 2016.
  • The number and client mix of TEDS records depends, to some extent, on external factors -including the availability of public funds. In states with higher funding levels, a larger percentage of the substance abusing population may be admitted to treatment, including the less severely impaired and the less economically disadvantaged.

  • The primary, secondary, and tertiary substances of abuse reported to the TEDS are those substances that led to the treatment episode, and not necessarily a complete enumeration of all drugs used at the time of admission.

  • The way an admission is defined may vary from state to state such that the absolute number of admissions is not a valid measure for comparing states.

  • States continually review the quality of their data processing. As systematic errors are identified, revisions may be enacted in historical TEDS data files. While this system improves the data set over time, reported historical statistics may change slightly from year to year.

  • States vary in the extent to which coercion plays a role in referral to treatment. This variation derives from criminal justice practices and differing concentrations of abuser subpopulations.

  • Public funding constraints may direct states to selectively target special populations, for example, pregnant women or adolescents.

  • TEDS includes treatment admissions and in many states the files may include multiple admissions for the same client. Therefore, any statistics derived from the data will represent admissions, not clients. It is possible for clients to have multiple initial admissions within a state and even within providers that have multiple treatment sites within the state. A few states uniquely identify clients at the state-level and several more states are attempting to achieve this level of client identification. The TEDS provides a good national snapshot of what is seen at admission to treatment, but is currently unable to follow individual clients through a sequence of treatment episodes.

  • The TEDS distinguishes between "transfer admissions" and "initial admissions." Transfer admissions include clients transferred for distinct services within an episode of treatment. Only initial admissions are included in the public use files.

  • Some states have no opioid treatment programs (OTPs) that provide medication-assisted therapy using methadone and/or buprenorphine. See the TEDS state-by-state crosswalk for information regarding data collected by each state.

Subject Terms: 
  • alcohol abuse
  • drug abuse
  • drug treatment
  • health care services
  • health insurance
  • intervention
  • mental health
  • substance abuse
  • substance abuse treatment
  • treatment programs

Study Methodology

Mode of data collection: 
record abstracts
Extent of processing: 
  • Performed consistency checks.
  • Created variable labels and/or value labels.
  • Standardized missing values.
  • Created online analysis version with question text.
  • Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.