Linking Administrative and Survey Data for Statistical Purposes

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1 Linking Administrative and Survey Data for Statistical Purposes Current Use and Opportunities International Health Data Linkage Conference April 29 th, 2014

2 Current environment Declining budgets Falling survey response rates Respondent burden Privacy concerns Need to look at alternatives 2

3 Use of administrative data Statistics Canada uses administrative data in its statistical programs when it leads to a better outcome that is, a better balance between relevance, quality, costs and respondent burden. reducing burden and costs improving data quality and timeliness filling critical data gaps 3

4 Use of administrative data has grown over time Statistics Canada has been using administrative data in its programs since 1918 Currently over 500 administrative files used to produce statistics 40% of Statistics Canada s statistical programs are based in whole or in part on them Current uses include: Direct replacement in business and household surveys to reduce respondent burden Maintenance of Statistics Canada s business and address registers Benchmark economic and social statistics 37% Sources of Administrative Data 37% 26% Federal Prov/Terr Other Note: Other includes data from municipalities, non-profit organizations and private sector sources. 4

5 and continues to pursue new sources and methodologies More than 50 initiatives underway at Statistics Canada to extend use of administrative data to either replace survey data in whole or in part, or to answer questions that cannot be addressed with existing survey data Potential of big data being assessed by Statistics Canada and other statistical agencies globally e.g. assessing potential to use retail scanner data in the Consumer Price Index program 5

6 Data Linkage What STC brings to the table Expertise leader in the development of methodologies and software for record linkage (GRLS, G-Link) Legislative framework each record linkage must be in accordance with the Statistics Act and Privacy Act benefits must clearly outweigh the invasion of privacy Transparency annual Report to Parliament summary of all approved record linkages available on website Accessibility to linked data via Research Data Centres no charge to university researchers..just some paperwork! 6

7 Record linkage advances our knowledge Health Administrative Data Population Health Surveys Census of Population Immigration Data Employment/Education Data 7

8 Record linkage at Statistics Canada: Advantages for health research Large national population based cohorts study rare outcomes, regional comparisons 10 year exposure to air pollution and effect on mortality, 1991 Census Mortality Cohort Prospective cohorts to determine impact of risk/exposure on long-term health outcomes 8 Findings: Long-term exposure to even low amounts of small particulate matter pose a risk to life expectancy

9 Record linkage at Statistics Canada: Advantages for health research Examine health care use and health outcomes of key sub-populations not otherwise identified in health administrative data Cardiovascular hospitalization rates (per 10,000 pop) by generational status, Urban Canada (excluding Quebec),

10 What is SDRLE? Social Domain Record Linkage Environment (SDRLE) Proof of concept for a new strategy for broad-based socio-economic record linkage work An environment for record linkage activities Based on multiple files linked together over time: census, tax filers, births, deaths, landed immigrants, Indian Registry Two major components: derived record and key depository What it is not It is not a large linked data base of integrated survey information 10

11 What it Looks Like Identifiers of the datasets are linked to the DRD Justice Data Health Data Survey Data Education Data Tax Data Record Depository Key Depository Indian Registry Vital Statistics The results are stored in a depository of linked keys Immigration Data Census 11

12 Why do we need a SDRLE? Increasing interest in administrative data and record linkage Opportunity to respond to information needs without collecting new data Small area data Understanding OUTCOMES Increasing public policy insight 12

13 Alternatives to the traditional census Government needs an accurate population headcount Determines number of federal electoral districts and draw electoral boundaries Legislative requirements Used to transfer over $60 billion annually Support government operations 13

14 Census of Population Traditionally, the headcount has been achieved through a direct enumeration of the population Mandatory short form Name Date of Birth Address or usual place of residence on a specified date Sex Marital Status Household/family composition 14

15 Two options are being explored as potential replacement for the traditional census head count 1 Using/modifying the federal income tax and benefits system as a direct replacement 2 Linking a variety of existing federal and provincial administrative files 15

16 Option 1 - Personal tax and benefits data By matching name and date of birth, 88% of the census individuals could be identified in the individual tax and benefits system Matching rate varies significantly at provincial/territorial level, from 92% in Quebec to 54% in Nunavut and across age groups Some groups had low matching rates, for example Aboriginal peoples on reserves (71%) Population coverage using the tax collection system as is - 100% - 88% - 50% Individuals in the Census database that were found on the T1 and benefits system: 88% 16

17 Option 1 - Personal tax and benefits data (cont d) As well, there would be data gaps: marital status, place of residence and household composition are not available through the tax and benefits system Strategies to capture missing information and individuals would have to be explored 17

18 Option 2 - Linking existing federal and provincial administrative data Tax data & child benefits Indian Register Virtual population register Pension benefits Unemployment benefits Births and deaths records Records on permanent and temporary residents Health files 18

19 In moving forward, questions would have to focus on Changes to existing legislative and policy frameworks Coverage, Cost and Quality Implications for the tax system and tax administration Access to administrative sources (beyond federal) 19

20 But especially on Privacy issues Public acceptance 20

21 THANK YOU 21

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