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2008 NCHS Data Users’ Conference. Omni Shoreham Hotel Washington, DC Wednesday, August 13, 2008. Session 43: The Research Data Center: Data Enclave of the NCHS Session Coordinator and Presenter Deborah Rose, Ph.D. Speakers and topics (updated list). Introduction to the RDC:

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2008 nchs data users conference

2008 NCHS Data Users’ Conference

Omni Shoreham Hotel

Washington, DC

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Session 43:The Research Data Center:Data Enclave of the NCHSSession Coordinator and PresenterDeborah Rose, Ph.D.

speakers and topics updated list
Speakers and topics (updated list)

Introduction to the RDC:

  • Overview of the Research Data Center – What it is and what it does - Deborah Rose, Ph.D., M.P.H.
  • Types of data available - Stephanie Robinson, B.A.
speakers and topics updated list continued
Speakers and topics (updated list, continued)

Examples of RDC research collaborations:

  • Emergency medicine research and the RDC - Julius Cuong Pham, M.D., Ph.D
  • Assessing health and health care in the District of Columbia - Carole Roan Gresenz, PhD
  • Combining contextual variables with data from NHANES III - Chloe Bird, Ph.D.
what is the rdc
What is the RDC?

Location A suite of offices in Hyattsville


Staff Project managers who are

experienced analysts

Security Keypad access office suite, stand-

alone computers

Data Public and confidential health and

other information, combined and

customized for your project

Access Onsite, remote, Census RDC

start of the rdc
Start of the RDC
  • Modeled after the Census Bureau Data Research Centers
  • Opened in 1998
  • Policies were developed to assure access and confidentiality
two contradictory mandates
Two contradictory mandates
  • Wide dissemination of the data - The Public Health Service Act of 1956 requires the collection and wide dissemination of data.
  • Maintenance of confidentiality - the NCHS 308(d) Confidentiality Statute requires that the information collected may not be released if the establishment or person supplying the information is identifiable
resolving the contradiction
Resolving the contradiction
  • Summary tables of aggregate data are published (on paper or on the web)
  • Public use datasets are released with person or institution level records
  • Records do not include individual identifiers
  • Variables that might allow record identification are suppressed
  • Values based on small samples are suppressed
when do you need the rdc
When do you need the RDC?

Data needs and availability

  • You have a research project or policy objective best served by analyzing representative, federally collected health data
  • Public use data does not meet all your needs
  • NCHS has, or can get, the data of interest
when do you need the rdc continued
When do you need the RDC?(continued)

Analytic skills and computer access

  • You or your staff have the skills to analyze individual level data using a standard statistical package
  • You can come to the NCHS RDC, a Census RDC, or have a secure email account to access our remote system.
when do you need confidential variables
When do you need confidential variables?
  • Confidential information is directly related to your main research question.
  • You need to link link two or more datasets, using small area geographic identifiers (such as state, county or census tract) that are not publicly available.
  • You need to make a subset of the population using selection criteria from a confidential variable such as exact age, date of interview, small race/ethnic group.
types of data
Types of Data
  • NCHS Supplied: Confidential variables from the vital statistics system, any of the NCHS data collection systems, or files linked between systems
  • User supplied: Public use or other data collected by other agencies, or compiled by the user
  • See next presentation for more detail
major steps
Major Steps
  • See the website for the latest requirements
  • Develop and submit a proposal
  • We review it and accept, reject or ask for revisions
  • You sign the confidentiality agreements
  • You send us the public use files
  • We merge the public and confidential data
  • We send you an invoice for the setup and usage costs
major steps continued
Major Steps(continued)
  • You run your analyses
  • We review the output for disclosure
  • You publish
  • Please send us a citation and copy of your published or reported work!
components of the proposal
Components of the proposal
  • Contact information
  • Key study questions/Public health benefits
  • Year, data system and dataset(s)
  • Lists of public use and confidential variables
  • Why publicly available data are insufficient
  • Analysis/statistical methods/software
  • Sample output table shells
nchs user fees
NCHS User Fees

File construction and setup

  • Mortality files = $250 per day
  • All other files = $500 per day
nchs user fees continued
NCHS User Fees(continued)

Access and Analysis

On site

  • $200 per day (2-10 days)


  • NSFG-CDF = $500/year
  • All other files = $500/month
  • Each added survey cycle = $250/month
andre anlytical data research by email
ANDRE: ANlytical Data Research by Email
  • Completely automated system
  • Operates round the clock

without any human intervention

  • Registered subscribers only
    • Proposals already reviewed and approved
    • Confidentiality agreements have been signed
  • Unlimited Access during the subscription period
how andre works
How ANDRE Works
  • A registered subscriber sends an email to ANDRE with a SAS or SUDAAN program in an attachment
  • ANDRE’s lead server authenticates the user through password challenge and email
  • Researchers never see data but run their programs against a data set prepared to their specifications by RDC staff
nchs rdc usage statistics
NCHS RDC Usage Statistics

Average no. of projects 1998-2003 = 1.5/month

Average no. of projects 2004-2006 = 2.5/month

Average no. of proposals 2007 = 10/month

Current no. of active projects, 2007 = 146

Average no. of daily remote users 2007 = 18

Average no. of proposals 2008 = 7/month

Current no. of active projects, 2008 > 200

Average no. of daily remote users 2008 = 30

visit the nchs rdc website at
Visit the NCHS RDC website at: