Data needed for improving the health of minorities

Manning Feinleib

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Identified needs for minority health data, obstacles in obtaining the data, and potential solutions are reviewed. Vital statistics for whites and blacks have been available by states for many years. Recent revisions provide data on Hispanics, and new resolutions will provide data on Asian and Pacific Islander subgroups. But limitations persist in providing accurate statistics for minority subgroups. A major obstacle is the inadequacy of census denominator estimates, due to differential undercounts, paucity of postcensal estimates for states and localities, and the validity of the race and ethnicity data. Important issues revolve around quality, comparability, and intraperson variability of self-identification in determining race and ethnicity, versus external assessment. National survey data have oversampled for black and Hispanic minorities, but not others. The Disadvantaged Minority Health Improvement Act of 1990 provides some solutions, including an extramural grants program to strengthen minority statistics, which the National Center for Health Statistics has implemented to improve minority health assessment at all levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-202
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of Epidemiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Asian Americans
  • blacks
  • health assessment
  • health surveys
  • minority groups
  • vital statistics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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