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Public Health: Statistics/Data for Health

A guide to finding online resources for public health research


This page was put together to offer quick access to some of the resources that gather statistics and data related to diseases and health related concerns. Categories were assigned to assist in determining which type or location might work best for your research need. Additional resources and recommendations for this page are welcome.

CDC Data Portal and Raw Data

If you are looking for raw data there are few different areas of the CDC website to check in. 

CDC Data Portal

For raw data that can be shared publicly (i.e. it does not have sensitive private information) you can try the CDC data portal at There are a number of preset categories displayed in boxes on the data portal’s homepage or you can click on ‘Browse all’ to search them all. From Browse All you can search with keywords in the search bar at the top and filter your searchers using the options to the left, including Categories, Type, Tags and Domain.

The results may include files like maps, stories, calendars and other things, so if you are only looking for datasets, select that option from the View Types filter on the left.

De-identified Vital Statistics

For raw vital statistics data (births, deaths, and related data) the Vital Statistics Online Data Portal has US data files, US Territories data files, and user guides all organized by year. While these datasets are deidentified, make sure to read the Data Use Agreement and Data Use Policy before using these data files.

Sensitive Raw Data

For raw data that may include sensitive information there are a few different sources. The CDC’s Research Data Center allows researchers to access restricted data through a mediated application process. Instructions on how to apply and what the process is like are on this page and the FAQ can answer general questions. For other questions email

County Level

Citing Statistics Resources

Citing can be a challenge when looking at the variety of sources and formats that statistical information comes in. Here are a few helpful sources.

Citing National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)

Global Statistics

State Level Statistics

International Data Sources

Massachusetts Statistics

Community Prevenitve Services Initiatives

Guide to Community Preventive Services

A free resource to help you choose programs and policies to improve health and prevent disease in your community. Systematic reviews are used to answer these questions:

  • Which program and policy interventions have been proven effective?
  • Are there effective interventions that are right for my community?
  • What might effective interventions cost; what is the likely return on investment?

Additional page

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