Data Access - Statewide Planning and Research Cooperative System (SPARCS)

SPARCS offers three levels of data access: public, limited, and identifiable. Public use data is openly available. Limited or identifiable data requires the submission of an application.

Public

Public use data contains de-identified data consisting of basic record-level detail. This data does not contain protected health information (PHI) under HIPAA.

Public use data can be obtained through the Health Data NY website and the Health Data Query System. The Health Data NY website provides access to de-identified data consisting of basic record-level detail. The Health Data Query System is a public tool that summarizes SPARCS discharge data in statistical tables on an annual, calendar year basis.

Limited

Limited data contains indirect identifiers that are deemed identifiable according to HIPAA standards. Limited data requests are reviewed by SPARCS Operations staff.

To apply for limited data, e-mail the completed form DOH-4395 to sparcs.requests@health.ny.gov.

Identifiable

Identifiable data pertains to a particular individual's facility stay which, if disclosed, would constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy, as stipulated in Department regulations, Title 10, NYCRR 400.18. Identifiable requests are reviewed by the data review group.

To apply for identifiable data, e-mail the completed form DOH-4385 and affidavits to sparcs.requests@health.ny.gov.

Data Governance Committee

The Data Governance Committee (DGC) is responsible for reviewing identifiable data requests. For further information, including the DGC manual, membership, list of approved requests, and meeting schedule click here.

Fees

Costs, discounts, and exemptions for SPARCS data apply to limited or identifiable files. The public use files available on Health Data NY are provided at no charge. Payments are only accepted by check. All fees must be paid prior to the release of the data.

Costs: $700/year for inpatient; $1,500/year for outpatient. An additional $50 is charged per identifier/year.

Discounts: Students and nonprofit organizations receive a 50% discount. A student from a nonprofit organization will receive a maximum discount of 75%.

Exemptions:

  • SPARCS facilities
  • State or city universities
  • Federal, New York State, county, or local government agencies using data for healthcare-related purposes

Resources

SAS Read-in Programs

The following are SAS read-in programs for inpatient and outpatient files. If you are using a completely un-encrypted file, please contact us for an alternate version of the program.

For data received on or after October 1, 2014:
For data received prior to October 1, 2014:

Output Data Dictionaries