Population Health and Vital Statistics

Data Sources & Definitions

Data DefinitionsPDF

Information on births, deaths and fetal deaths is compiled from the original documents filed with the Arizona Department of Health Services', Office of Vital Records and from transcripts of original birth and death certificates filed in other states but affecting Arizona residents. (Copies of certificates for births, deaths and fetal deaths occurring to Arizona residents outside the United States are not sent to Arizona).

Information on induced terminations of pregnancy (abortions) performed on Arizona women is compiled from reports sent to the Arizona Department of Health Services by facilities within but not outside the state.

Pregnancies are the sum of live births, spontaneous terminations of pregnancy (fetal deaths or stillbirths) and induced terminations of pregnancy (abortions).

Arizona has no central registry for marriage and divorce records. Statistics are limited to counts of marriages and divorces reported monthly by the Clerk of the Superior Court in each county in which the marriage or divorce occurred. These reports contain no demographic data on the people marrying or divorcing.

Data on morbidity, levels of disease and disability in the population, are obtained for certain infectious diseases that must be reported by law. The ADHS Epidemiology and Disease Control Services conducts surveillance and monitoring of these notifiable diseases and provided data for the morbidity sections in this report.

All short-stay nonfederal hospitals in Arizona are required to submit every six months uniform patient reports to the Arizona Department of Health Services. The statistical information about both hospital inpatient discharges and emergency room visits is collected by the Section of Cost Reporting and Discharge Data Review in the Bureau of Public Health Statistics.

Population denominators for Arizona residents, used to calculate rates, are projections from the Population Statistics Unit in the Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) (1981-1988, 1991-1999) and census enumerations (data for 1980, 1990, and 2000 from the U.S. Census Bureau. In order to obtain the 2001-2005 population denominators, the 2000 percentages of population breakdowns (or census shares) by age group and gender were applied to total state and county annual population estimates for 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005.

Two data sources were utilized in producing the 2006 and 2007 population estimates. The totals for the State and each of its counties agree with the projections released by the Arizona Department of Commerce on March 31, 2006. The percentages of population breakdowns by single-year of age, gender and race/ethnicity were derived from the estimates at U.S. Census Populations With Bridged Race Categories. The 2006 and 2007 population estimates by race/ethnicity should not be compared with the previously published estimates for 2001-2005, which used the year 2000 census shares.