Sampling Methodology provides the content to describe the process of sampling a population based on the Methodology Pattern and Process Pattern. Sampling is the process of selecting individual units from a within a broader defined population using a variety of established methods to ensure that the sample adequately represents the population as a whole either directly or through the use of proportional weighting for the purpose of generalizing analytical results from the sample to the general population. Sampling may be single or multi-stage in design and may require splitting the population in various ways to achieve the desired representation.

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In a multi-stage design there might be two stages. In the first stage we sample providers. In the second stage we sample patients. At the provider stage we might sample physician practices and hospitals (provider stage has two stage samples). At the patient stage we might take many approaches to sampling patients within a practice depending on how the practice chooses to participate. There might be just one scheme for sampling patients within hospitals that we can use across all hospitals.


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