The Bureau of Vital Statistics is responsible for the registration, amendment, analysis, and reporting of all vital events in NYC including births, deaths, and terminations of pregnancy. All vital events are required by law to be reported to the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene if they occur in or enroute to NYC, regardless of individual residency status, in a particular year. We are committed to collaborating with researchers and community members to understand and promote the health of New Yorkers. Data are available publicly or by request, depending on the type of data that you need.
See below for the type of data we offer, and how you can access it.
Birth data come from information provided for birth certificates. These contain information about parents’ demographics, birth parent’s prenatal history and care, insurance coverage as well as labor and delivery. Births must be filed within five business days of the event. Birth data are generally collected using two worksheets:
Mortality Data (Death Data)
Mortality data (death data) come from information provided for death certificates. These contain demographic information such as the age, sex, race and residence of the person who died, fact of death (person, place, and time of death) as well as information about the cause of death. The demographic information is typically provided by a family member through the funeral home.
There are two forms, one for natural causes and one for medical examiner cases.
Infant mortality is the death of an infant before their first birthday.
Spontaneous Termination of Pregnancy
Spontaneous termination of pregnancy, or STOP, is a death of a fetus at any point during the pregnancy. Other terms for spontaneous terminations of pregnancy include miscarriage, stillbirth, and fetal demise. The Health Department requires filing reports of spontaneous terminations of any gestational age. The Health Department collects more detailed information on medical characteristics of the birth parent and fetus for gestational ages 20 weeks or older.
Vital Statistics Annual Summary
Every year the Health Department’s Summary of Vital Statistics highlights the births, deaths and termination of pregnancies that occur in New York City by trends, demographics and geography. These data are used to inform our programs and policies. Use the Publication search page to access Summary of Vital Statistics for Series Title. The end of each summary of Vital Statistics shows a voided copy of the certificate with all the information collected for both legal and research purposes.
EpiQuery is a web-based, user-friendly system designed to provide users with health data from a variety of sources. EpiQuery Modules are based on health datasets with varying topics and indicators for different NYC populations. The system runs real-time analyses to offer prevalence estimates with confidence intervals, rates over time, bar charts and neighborhood maps and much more. To access vital statistics data through EpiQuery, under “Source,” click on “Vital Statistics,” or go to the Birth and Death section under “Topic.” The most recent year of data may be available in the VS summary.
Micro SAS Data Sets
Two kinds of data require a Data Use Application [need secure form for this], which limits access and allowable uses of the information.
Information where line-listed data have been combined into two or more levels. Aggregate data may be comprised of counts (frequencies) or summary statistics. If aggregated data is deemed identifiable, you will be informed. Certain restrictions may apply to identifiable aggregated data.
Here are some examples of aggregate data:
In line-level data, there are one or more records or rows for each individual in the sample. These data may be deemed non-identifiable or identifiable.
The Health Department can provide line-level data in two forms:
Vital Statistics Data Linked to Another Data Source
PRAMS is a surveillance project of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and health departments. PRAMS collects state and NYC-specific, population-based data on maternal attitudes and experiences before, during and shortly after pregnancy. Researchers and state, territory and local governments use PRAMS data to investigate emerging issues in reproductive health.
SPARCS is a comprehensive all payer data reporting system. The system was initially created to collect information on discharges from hospitals. SPARCS currently collects patient level detail on patient characteristics, diagnoses and treatments, services and charges for each hospital inpatient stay and outpatient visit.
SPARCS offers three levels of data access: public, limited and identifiable. SPARCS data may be used for medical or scientific research, or statistical or epidemiological purposes. To access SPARCS identifiable or limited data, submit a request to the SPARCS Program using standard data request forms.
PDF Copies of Birth Certificates
If you need a copy of your or child’s birth certificate, visit the Birth Certificates page to order. You can order a copy for administrative or research purposes approved by the NYC Health Code.
PDF Copies of Redacted Death Certificates (Clinical Trial Adjudication)
Adjudication in clinical trials, also known as Clinical Endpoint Adjudication, is a standardized process that assesses the safety and efficacy of clinical trials. It aims to accomplish consistency and accuracy in study results and eliminate potential bias of investigators (Held, 2019). These vital record copies may also be used for mortality surveillance and survival analysis.
For more information on how to request access to this data, visit the Accessing Vital Statistics Data page.