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BBB Accredited Business since

Center For The Study Of Services

Phone: (202) 347-9612 View Additional Phone Numbers 1625 K St NW 8th Flr, Washington, DC 20006


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According to information provided by the Center, it is a non-profit organization that produces publications and websites to aid consumers in the selection of a wide variety of goods and services. It provides a car buying service called 'Car Bargains' and publishes a magazine entitled 'Consumers' Checkbook,' and does surveys and research for other organizations, also contributing to assisting consumers. 

BBB Accreditation

A BBB Accredited Business since

BBB has determined that Center For The Study Of Services meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.

BBB accreditation does not mean that the business' products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business' product quality or competency in performing services.

Reason for Rating

BBB rating is based on 16 factors. Get the details about the factors considered.

Factors that raised the rating for Center For The Study Of Services include:

  • Length of time business has been operating.
  • Complaint volume filed with BBB for business of this size.
  • Response to 1 complaint(s) filed against business.
  • Resolution of complaint(s) filed against business.
  • BBB has sufficient background information on this business.

Customer Complaints Summary Read complaint details

1 complaint closed with BBB in last 3 years | 1 closed in last 12 months
Complaint Type Total Closed Complaints
Advertising/Sales Issues 0
Billing/Collection Issues 0
Delivery Issues 0
Guarantee/Warranty Issues 0
Problems with Product/Service 1
Total Closed Complaints 1

Additional Information

BBB file opened: June 01, 2001 Business started: 04/19/1974
Type of Entity


Business Management
Mr. Robert Krughoff, President Ms. Debra Winfield, Accountant
Contact Information
Principal: Mr. Robert Krughoff, President
Customer Contact: Ms. Debra Winfield, Accountant
Business Category

Publishers - Periodical

Alternate Business Names
Car Bargains Checkbook Magazine Consumers' Checkbook

Additional Locations

  • 1625 K St NW 8th Flr

    Washington, DC 20006


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Additional Phone Numbers

  • (202) 347-7283(Phone)
  • (800) 213-7283(Phone)
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Complaint Detail(s)

3/25/2014 Problems with Product/Service | Read Complaint Details

Additional Notes

Complaint: I have been contacted by U.S. mail by a company, CSS, Center for the Study of Services/Health Research Group, PO Box ***** *********** *********** ***********., (aforenamed/mentioned) in the form of a "Survey". This "survey"is from a company that has somehow obtained both personally identifiable bio-data of myself, as well as information with precise and specific regard to personal health information including (but not limited to) medical treatment, coverages of medical treatment, demographic information of health provider(s) that provide said treatment as well as other information protected under federal (and State) HIPPA laws. This "survey" is quite in-depth and vioaltes my rights as well as my provider's rights to protected health information, data and records. It presents as a kind of "survey" not only asking further specific health information, but also contains information within the actual 'survey' identifying protected health information. This, somehow illegally obtained, and references more information protected under HIPPA and other Privacy Act Laws. The information contained in this 'survey' is outside of of the rules of disclosure or 'exceptions' under HIPPA or the Privacy Act, further Federal HIPPA Laws preempt any State laws by which this company may be attempting to use as an avenue to gather protecteed health-related information. To the best of my personal knowledge I have NOT given any health-care provider nor business entity permission to disclose nor release the information that this 'survey company has somehow been using and obtained.

Desired Settlement: Expalanation of where and exactly how this information was obtained, when it was obtained and where-from. A cease and desist of this company's illegal "survey' practices, fines if applicable. The company for which this complaint is set forth is : CSS, Center for the study of Services/Health Research Group, PO Box ***** *********** *********** ***********. Outside of this I am going to pusrue litigation and legal actions under U.S. Federal Laws. I would like this comapny to be fully investigated for it's illegal information gathering and disclosure practices.

Business Response:

Dear **. ******,


*** ******* *** ******** * ******** ******** (***) is the federal agency that administers the Medicare program and its responsibility is to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries get high quality care.  As a part of carrying out their responsibility, *** contracted with the **** Corporation to study the performance of *********** **** ************* (***).  As a part of the study, **** contracted with the Center for the Study of Services (CSS) to conduct a ******** ********** ** ********** ********* *** ******* (*****) survey of Medicare beneficiaries about their healthcare providers. The ***** for ***s Survey is a component of the shared savings payment policy required by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (***).   CSS is a *** approved *** ***** survey vendor ****************************************************).


Sampled Medicare beneficiary names, addresses, and provider relationships were gathered from Medicare data.  **** worked with *** to draw a random sample of Medicare beneficiaries to include in the survey.  **** provided CSS with a sample of 189,200 Medicare beneficiaries to survey. 


CSS was only given beneficiary contact information and provider names. CSS does not have access to any of beneficiary medical records.


All survey materials (letters and survey instruments) were approved by *** prior to mailing.


All sampled beneficiaries, including the person who submitted the complaint, were sent a prenotification letter on January 17, 2014 (attached) and a survey package on January 24, 2014 (cover letter and survey instrument attached). Non-respondents to the first survey package were sent a replacement survey package on February 12, 2014.


Survey results are provided by CSS only to **** for analysis by **** on behalf of ***.


I hope this addresses the complaint. Please let me know if you would like any more detail.



**** *******



**** *******, Healthcare Research Director

Center for the Study of Services

###-###-#### | 1625 K Street, NW, 8th Floor | Washington, DC 20006 | 


BBB's Final Determination: Business offered a resolution. Consumer did not pursue further with BBB and the matter was assumed to be resolved