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

Notice to Approved Data Requestors:

Between October 2017 and March 2018, the SPARCS program migrated its intake system to a new intake system. Because of this transition, a new data file format was created.

SPARCS 2017 data updates have been delayed as we continue to monitor data completeness and quality. Approved data requestors with a scheduled refresh between February 2018 and October 2018 have been impacted with a delay..

The SPARCS program plans data release to begin in November 2018. An email is going out to all affected data requestors. If you have concerns or questions about your data refresh, please contact us at:

We appreciate your patience as we conclude this major data and technology system transformation.


SPARCS Evolution User Communication (March 20, 2018)

SPARCS Data Access

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 Use Data

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 and Identifiable Data

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

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 limited and identifiable data, download and complete the SPARCS Limited and Identifiable Data Request Form (DOH-5132) from the forms page. Form DOH-5132 replaces previous forms DOH-4385 and DOH-4395.

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.


Output Data Dictionaries

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: