Data Collection Standards for Race, Ethnicity, Primary Language, Sex, and Disability Status

Current law invests in the implementation of a new health data collection and analysis strategy. This strategy contains provisions to strengthen federal data collection efforts by requiring that all national federal data collection efforts collect information on race, ethnicity, sex, primary language and disability status. The law also provides the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) the opportunity to collect additional demographic data to further improve our understanding of healthcare disparities.

The law requires that data collection standards for these measures be used, to the extent that it is practical, in all national population health surveys. It applies to self-reported information only. The law also requires any data standards published by HHS to comply with standards created by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

The standards apply to population health surveys sponsored by HHS, where respondents either self-report information or a knowledgeable person responds for all members of a household. HHS is implementing these data standards in all new surveys and at the time of major revisions to current surveys.