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    Data Stewards 

    Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC)

    HSCRC receives a monthly feed of all discharges from Maryland’s 47 hospitals. Two separate data files are available: 1) the inpatient data file contains discharge medical record abstract and billing data on inpatient hospitalizations and 2) the outpatient data file contains discharge medical record abstract and billing data on emergency department visits. The inpatient and outpatient data files contain clinical and nonclinical data elements, such as primary and secondary diagnoses using International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 9th revision (ICD-9) codes, patient demographic characteristics (date of birth, race/ethnicity, sex, place of residence), services, hospital characteristics, expected payment source, charges, and length of stay. The data provides information on various topics, including access to care, health care cost, and utilization of health services. 


    HSCRC data lack a common identifier across hospitals, so number of patients and readmissions cannot be determined. County-level data are based on zip code due to issues with the county variable. Race methodology changed in fiscal year 2013; therefore, calendar year 2014 race data may not be comparable to previous years. Maryland residents hospitalized outside of Maryland are not included in the data files; therefore, the number of hospitalizations may be underreported especially in Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties where many Maryland residents may utilize hospital services in Washington, DC.  


    Maryland Cancer Registry (MCR)

    The MCR is a computer-based cancer incidence data system that tracks the number of cancer cases in Maryland and helps communities to plan for cancer services. The MCR collects, maintains, and reports on all new reportable cancers diagnosed in people in Maryland, including tumors of the brain and central nervous system, even if they are benign. Basal and squamous cancers of the skin are not reported to the MCR. Maryland law requires hospitals, freestanding radiation therapy centers, ambulatory care facilities, laboratories, and physicians to report tumors to the MCR within six months of diagnosis. Through data exchange agreements with neighboring states, including Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia, the MCR receives information on Maryland residents diagnosed or treated for cancer in these states.


    Certain stratifications may require authorization and/or suppression. The availability of data depends on the data submitted to the MCR. Data use and release is governed by the Data Use Manual and Procedures located at: http://phpa.dhmh.maryland.gov/cancer/SitePages/mcr_data.aspx.


    Maryland Department of the Environment Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (LPPP)

    By state regulation, the LPPP receives blood lead results from laboratories, offices, or other facilities that draw blood from children 18 years and younger for blood lead level analysis. Variables collected include demographics of the child, name of the parent/guardian, type of specimen collected and date it was drawn, name and address of clinic/practice where specimen was drawn, laboratory name and address, and blood lead level. Blood lead levels greater than or equal to 20 µg/dL will be reported by the end of the second business day following the final test result. Other blood lead test results will be reported within two weeks of the final test result.


    Release of individual-level data is limited by statute. The availability of data depends on the data submitted to the LPPP. There is seasonal variation of blood lead levels, which may be more apparent in areas that experience colder climates.


    Maryland Vital Statistics Administration (VSA)

    The VSA maintains a registry of all births and deaths occurring in Maryland, regardless of resident status, and all births and deaths to Maryland residents that occur outside the State. Births are required by Maryland law to be reported to VSA within five days. Birth data variables include demographics of the newborn and mother, birth weight, place of birth, complications, and congenital defects, among other variables. Deaths are required by Maryland law to be reported to VSA within three days. The death registry contains cause of death, demographics, place of occurrence, and place of residence, among other variables. Underlying cause of death refers to the disease or injury that initiated the chain of events leading directly to death. Contributing cause(s) of death refer to other significant conditions that may have contributed to the death. The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 10th revision (ICD-10) has been used to code the causes of death reported on death certificates since 1999.


    Release of individual-level data is limited by statute. Counts are often too small to calculate rates below the level of the county.


    Maryland Birth Defects Reporting Information System (BDRIS)

    The BDRIS surveillance system collects data on all noted or suspected birth defects in the state from the institution in which the infant is born. Designated contacts are available at each hospital to ensure accurate reporting. In the event of a home birth, it is the responsibility of the person who is required by law to file the birth certificate, often a physician or nurse-midwife attending the birth, to report the birth defect to BDRIS. The Birth Defects Reporting Form is used for data collection and includes: residential address and occupation of the mother and father, lifestyle factors, details about the birth condition and associated diagnostics, prenatal health history, and pregnancy history. 


    Release of individual-level data is limited by statute. Counts are often too small to calculate rates below the level of the county.