Guidance Document on Creating and Releasing Hospital and Facility Discharge Data Public Use Files


Almost every state has some form of a hospital discharge data reporting system, maintained by a state or private Health Data Organization (HDO). These data systems capture all hospitalizations for every patient, regardless of insurance status or payer. As the demand for healthcare data increases, HDOs are seeking guidance on suitable standards for data release practices. Given the significant role of these healthcare data systems for healthcare reform, state budgeting, and the need for patient consumer information, health data organizations must be as transparent as possible in how theycollect and release data, without doing harm or diminishing patient privacy.