Programming Statements

Programming statements are used to create or modify the values of the explanatory variables in the MODEL statement. They are especially useful in fitting models with time-dependent explanatory variables. Programming statements can also be used to create explanatory variables that are not time-dependent. PROC SURVEYPHREG programming statements cannot be used to create or modify the values of the response variable, the censoring variable, the frequency variable, the WEIGHT variable, the CLASS variables, the STRATA variables, the CLUSTER variables, or the DOMAIN variables.

The following DATA step statements are available in PROC SURVEYPHREG:

  • ABORT;

  • ARRAY arrayname <[ dimensions ]> <$> <variables-and-constants>;

  • CALL name <(expression <, expression …>)>;


  • DO <variable = expression <TO expression> <BY expression>> <, expression <TO expression> <BY expression>> …

  • <WHILE expression> <UNTIL expression>;

  • END;

  • GOTO statement-label;

  • IF expression;

  • IF expression THEN program-statement;

  • ELSE program-statement;

  • variable = expression;

  • variable + expression;

  • LINK statement-label;

  • PUT <variable> <=> …;


  • SELECT <(expression)>;

  • STOP;

  • SUBSTR(variable, index, length)= expression;

  • WHEN (expression)program-statement;

  • OTHERWISE program-statement;

By default, the PUT statement in PROC SURVEYPHREG writes results to the Output window instead of the Log window. If you want the results of the PUT statements to go to the Log window, add the following statement before the PUT statement:


DATA step functions are also available. Use these programming statements the same way you use them in the DATA step. For detailed information, see the SAS Functions and CALL Routines: Reference.

Consider the following example of using programming statements in PROC SURVEYPHREG. Suppose blood pressure is measured at multiple times during the course of a study that investigates the effect of blood pressure on some survival time. By treating the blood pressure as a time-dependent explanatory variable, you can use the value of the most recent blood pressure at each specific point of time in the modeling process rather than using the initial blood pressure or the final blood pressure. The values of the following variables are recorded for each patient, if they are available. Otherwise, the variables contain missing values.


survival time


censoring indicator (with 0 as the censoring value)


blood pressure on entry to the study


time 1


blood pressure at T1


time 2


blood pressure at T2


design weight


identification of primary sampling units

The following programming statements create a variable BP. At each time T, the value of BP is the blood pressure reading for that time, if available. Otherwise, it is the last blood pressure reading.

proc surveyphreg;
   weight WT;
   model Time*Censor(0)=BP;
   cluster PSU;
   BP = BP0;
   if Time>=T1 and T1^=. then BP=BP1;
   if Time>=T2 and T2^=. then BP=BP2;