Data on Health and Well-being of American Indians, Alaska Natives, and Other Native Americans. National Vital Statistics System: Linked Birth-Infant Death (NVSS-I)

12/01/2006

Sponsor: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)/National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)
Description: The National Vital Statistics System Linked Birth-Infant Death (NVSS-I) research data set is comprised of linked birth and death certificates for infants born in the United States, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Guam who died before reaching 1 year of age. In this data set, information from the death certificate is linked with information from the birth certificate for each infant. The purpose of this linkage is to use the many additional variables available from the birth certificate in infant mortality analysis. The birth certificate is the primary source of demographic information, such as age, race, and Hispanic origin of the parents; maternal education; live birth order; and mothers marital status; and of maternal and infant health information, such as birthweight, period of gestation, plurality, prenatal care usage, and maternal smoking, etc. Analysis of this information can provide insight into the major factors influencing infant mortality in the United States. This system of linked records was established in 1983.
Relevant Policy Issues: Measurement of Health Status, Health Disparities.
Data Type(s): Registry
Unit of Analysis: Individual
Identification of AI/AN/NA: The majority of the demographic information is obtained from the birth certificate. Below is an example of the race question as it appears on the U.S. Standard Certificate of Live Birth:

MOTHERS RACE (Check one or more races to indicate what the mother considers herself)

  • White
  • Black or African American
  • American Indian or Alaska Native (AI/AN) and (Name of the enrolled or principal tribe)
  • Asian Indian
  • Chinese
  • Filipino
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Vietnamese
  • Other Asian (Specify)
  • Native Hawaiian (NH)
  • Guamanian or Chamorro
  • Samoan
  • Other Pacific Islander (OPI) (Specify)
  • Other (Specify)

Beginning in 2003, the number of births for any of the Asian /Pacific Islander subgroups is no longer available. Please see the NVSS report entitled Births: Final Data for 2003 for an explanation: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr54/nvsr54_02.pdf

AI/AN/NA Population in Data Set: From the 2003 linked file (National Vital Statistics Report, Volume 54, Number 16):
Race of Mother is American Indian (AI)
Births: 43,054 (N=4,090,007)
Infant deaths: 376* (N=27,995)
Neonatal deaths: 196 (N=18,935)
Post-neonatal deaths: 180 (N=9,060)
*Infant deaths are weighted, so numbers may not exactly add to totals due to rounding.

From the 2002 linked file (National Vital Statistics Report, Volume 53, Number 10):
Race of Mother is Hawaiian (NH)
Births: 6,772 (N=4,021,825)
Infant deaths: 65* (N=27,970)
Neonatal deaths: 38 (N=18,791)
Post-neonatal deaths: 27 (N=9,179)
*Infant deaths are weighted, so numbers may not exactly add to totals due to rounding.

AI/AN/NA Subpopulations: Based on available reports, identification for Native Hawaiians is possible for some years of data linkage (e.g., 2002).
Geographic Scope: Geographic scope of the data is national. Place of birth and place of death are classified by state and county. In residence classification of the birth, all births are allocated to the usual place of residence of the mother as reported on the birth certificate and are classified by state, county, and city. In residence classification of the death, all deaths are allocated to the usual place of residence of the decedent as reported on the death certificate and are classified by state, county, and city. Counties and cities of 250,000 persons or more are identified in the linked data set. Geographic classification for the linked data set is based on the 1980 census enumeration.
Date or Frequency: Linked files are available for the data years 1983-91 and 1995-2002. Linked file data were not produced for the 1992-94 data years. Future data years will be available annually.
Data Collection Methodology: Vital statistics are provided through state-operated registration systems. Administrative records pertaining to death certificates are completed by physicians, coroners, medical examiners, and funeral directors. Administrative records pertaining to birth certificates are completed by physicians and midwives. These records are filed with state vital statistics offices and selected statistical information is forwarded to NCHS to be merged into a national statistical file.
Participation: Mandatory
Strengths: Data sets contain a moderate number of AI/AN/NA respondents. There are multiple years of data available.
Limitations: There is limited documentation available for this study, so it is difficult to know which subpopulations of key interest can be examined separately using the data files. For example, in the 2002 report, Hawaiians are reported separately, but they are not reported separately in the 2003 report.
Access Requirements and Use Restrictions: Linked Birth and Infant Death public use data are available for the years 1983-91 and 1995-98 on CD-ROM. The Linked Birth and Infant Death CD-ROM can be purchased through the National Technical Information Service (NTIS) and/or the Government Printing Office (GPO). As prices vary, contact NTIS or GPO for current pricing.
Contact Information: Reproductive Statistics Branch
Division of Vital Statistics
National Center for Health Statistics
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
3311 Toledo Road, Room 7417
Hyattsville, Maryland 20782
(301) 458-4356

 

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