Confidential Data Requests for Research
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Research Application for Data Requests
Thank you for your interest in obtaining Florida vital records from the Florida Department of Health. Because vital records data include health-related and personal information that could identify individual respondents, these data are considered confidential under Florida Statute 382.025 (3)(d). However, the Bureau of Vital Statistics may provide exceptions to the statute for the release of certain data.
Each application is judged on its scientific merit, methodology, data security procedures, benefit to the Florida Department of Health (DOH) and the public, and consistency with epidemiologic research goals of Florida Statute 381.0031. Requests for confidential data will only be granted in cases where the project meets the aforementioned criteria and no other practical means of completing the project exists.
To begin the vital records request, complete the Vital Records Data Use Agreement Form (581K doc) and, where necessary, the DOH Institutional Review Board (IRB) application. Review of the proposals by the Bureau of Vital Statistics and the DOH IRB are two separate processes, and applicants must have an approved Vital Records Data Use Agreement first to apply for IRB review. Lists of fields contained in the vital records files are provided in the codebooks which are located on our Publications Page.
The application for requesting vital statistics data may be accessed by downloading the Vital Records Data Use Agreement Form (581K doc). A draft using this form should be sent as an attachment to ResearchData@flhealth.gov After the draft has been deemed acceptable for the review board, the final hardcopy with notarization and original signatures should be sent to the following address:
Bureau of Vital Statistics
Florida Department of Health
Attn. Gary Sammet
1217 N. Pearl St.
Jacksonville, FL 32202
Prior to initiating the IRB application process, we strongly encourage interested parties to consult with the DOH Ethics and Human Subjects Research Protection Program regarding whether their data request meets the criteria for IRB review under federal regulations. Review by the DOH IRB is required for all research involving human subjects.
An estimate of costs will be sent to the applicant for approval before the work begins. Once payment and supporting documentation are agreed upon by both parties, the data will be provided. A waiver or reduction of fees authorization by Florida Statutes 382.0255(1) will be considered only if the intended use of the data will have a direct health-related benefit to Florida citizens.
The Bureau of Vital Statistics review will be completed within 30 days; the applicant will be notified in writing of the decision regarding the release of data for the project. Further details on the requests for vital records, IRB determination criteria, and other topics may be found by downloading External Procedures for Data Access and Research Form (pdf, 28kb)