All requests made to BORN Ontario for data access will be managed in accordance with privacy legislation (PHIPA).

Start the Data Request Process by filling out the data request inquiry form. The completed inquiry form will automatically be sent to the BORN Ontario Data Request/Research Coordinator.

The Data Request/Research Coordinator will follow-up with you to discuss your request and can advise on the differences between aggregate and record-level data requests and in the case of record-level data requests: discuss timelines associated with data requests; risk of re-identification assessments and the Research Ethics Board requirements.

The application process varies depending on the type of information you are requesting.

Data Request Inquiry Form

Aggregated Data Request

If you are requesting a custom report using aggregated, de-identified information to answer a specific question, your request is considered an Aggregate Data Request. Once the BORN Data Request/Research Coordinator receives the completed data request inquiry form, they will work with you to determine any additional details needed to start the request.

The initial review of the data request will take 6-8 weeks to process. The turnaround time for the release of the data depends on the complexity of the request but can be estimated once the request is reviewed.

Record-Level Data Request

If you are requesting individual-level data for analysis and research purposes, your request is considered a Record-Level data request. This application process is more complex than aggregate data requests and may take a number of months to complete as it involves:

  • submission of a research and analysis plan
  • a research ethics board approval
  • an iterative process of risk assessment of re-identification
  • execution of confidentiality agreements
  • a data sharing/research agreement between BORN Ontario and your institution

In some cases, researchers need access to record level data to answer their research question, but prefer that BORN conduct the analysis internally and provide results in aggregate tables. Please contact BORN for cost and further information Science@BORNOntario.ca.

Datasets

BORN Ontario has historical birth record data (fiscal 2006-2011) and combined BORN maternal child data (fiscal 2012 onwards). When making a data request, specify which dataset you require. Please consider the points below when planning your study/project and submitting your data request.

The combined maternal child data (screening, pregnancy, complex pregnancy, birth, NICU, newborn screening), began data collection on April 1, 2012.

For historical birth record data (formerly the Niday perinatal database) and the legacy Ontario Midwifery Program Maternal Newborn Reporting System, the data elements in the dictionary differ from above. New data elements and updated terminology were added in 2012 which are not available in this historical data. Also please note that it will not always be possible to link some of the older data elements and names to the new data dictionary.

BORN Ontario Data Costing Policy - Aggregate and Record Level Data

BORN Ontario recovers costs associated with preparing aggregated data for external requestors and for preparing datasets for researchers. Costs for data depend on the nature and complexity of the request and the amount of time required by the analyst to prepare the tables/dataset. We can provide cost estimates for grant applications or funded research projects and other QI/Policy work following an assessment of the data request needs, usually following an initial consultation.

The cost estimate includes: opening of file and consultation, de-identification process, data analyst's time for file preparation and verification, and BORN Ontario admin fee. BORN Ontario can offer reduced fees for students where no grant funding is available. 

Health Equity

BORN Data Requestors – Have you considered Health Equity as a key component of your quality improvement or research project? Use this decision support tool to assess how your program, policy or project will affect different population groups. http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/pro/programs/heia/