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Do I have to be concerned about disclosure when using the NSDUH data?

The NSDUH data provided through SAMHDA by the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality (CBHSQ) are to be used for research and statistical purposes only. The data must not be used to identify a respondent. To reduce the risk of respondent identification, CBHSQ uses a number of disclosure limitation methods on the NSDUH data. For published estimates, no further disclosure limitation methods must be applied.

The public-use files and the corresponding estimates from the SAMHDA online analysis system (SDA) also have disclosure limitation steps applied to the data and therefore, no further steps need to be taken by the data user. For details on the disclosure limitation methodology used, please refer to the introductory text in the codebook for a given year.

The R-DAS data files have additional disclosure limitation protections applied to them. Tables are only produced when certain minimum cell size and other criteria are met for all cells. The output is also limited to weighted estimates (rounded to the nearest thousand) and no unweighted sample sizes are produced. Therefore, a user does not have to be concerned with disclosure if R-DAS produces a table for the user.

Beyond a finite set of sample size tables that are released to the public, CBHSQ does not make detailed sample sizes available to the public. This policy is intended to minimize potential disclosure risk. CBHSQ requires unweighted sample size numbers to be rounded to the nearest hundred when these numbers are generated from restricted-use data files.

Data Portal users must also round sample size numbers to the nearest hundred prior to using information outside of the Data Portal.