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Updates on 2020 Census Programs & ACS Data

Count Question Resolution Program

The Census Bureau began accepting and researching case submissions for the 2020 Census Count Question Resolution Operation (CQR) in January. CQR gives tribal, state, and local officials the opportunity to request the Census Bureau review their official 2020 Census boundaries and/or housing counts by block for potential processing errors.

Any corrections made will not impact the apportionment counts, redistricting data, or any other 2020 Census data products. They would, however, be used in the Census Bureau’s Population Estimates and other future programs that use 2020 Census data. The Census Bureau has provided Participant Guides on their website to assist government units prepare their CQR submission.

Governments that would like to request a review of group quarters population counts would be able to through a separate proposed program, the 2020 Post-Census Group Quarters Review (2020 PCGQR). Under this proposal, the Census Bureau will accept 2020 PCGQR cases submitted by tribal, state, and local government units from Spring 2022 through Summer 2023.

American Community Survey (ACS)

1-Year Data:

Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Census Bureau changed the 2020 American Community Survey (ACS) release schedule. Instead of providing the standard 1-year data products, the Census Bureau released experimental estimates from the 1-year data. This includes a limited number of data tables for the nation, states, and the District of Columbia. The 2020 ACS 1-year experimental estimates are posted on the 2020 ACS 1-Year Experimental Data Tables page; they are not available on

5-Year Data:

On March 17, the U.S. Census Bureau will release the standard, full suite of 2016–2020 American Community Survey (ACS) 5-year data products—down to the block group level. Following pandemic-related data collection disruptions, the Census Bureau revised its methodology to reduce nonresponse bias in data collected in 2020. After evaluating the effectiveness of this methodology, the Census Bureau determined the resulting data are fit for public release, government and business uses, and understanding the social and economic characteristics of the U.S. population and economy.

Disclosure Avoidance

The Census Bureau is working on the next phase of 2020 Census data product development. The Updated 2020 Census Data Product Planning Crosswalk is available. The Crosswalk compares the 2020 Census proposed 2020 Census Demographic Profile, Demographic and Housing Characteristics File (DHC), and Detailed Demographic and Housing Characteristics File (Detailed DHC) tables to the published 2010 Census tables. The Bureau plans two releases of demonstration data for the DHC and Detailed DHC products. With feedback from these releases, they plan to begin production of data products in Summer 2022.

Guide to Support Ambulatory Care

The Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) has created a guide to support ambulatory care settings of all types in the design and implementation of successful Patient-Generated Health Data (PGHD) programs. The guide is organized into six folios that help ambulatory care practices navigate the many steps from design, to launch, to maintenance of a successful, sustainable PGHD program. Learn more and access the guide. AHRQ will also be offering a webinar, Transforming Health Care Through Patient-Generated Health Data Integration, on Feb. 22, at 1:00 pm. Learn more and register

Increases in Reported Syphilis

During Calendar Year (CY) 2021, Pennsylvania (exclusive of Philadelphia) reported a 28% increase in Early Syphilis from CY 2020. The reported 1,418 cases in CY 2021 represents the highest number of Early Syphilis cases in more than 30 years. Additionally, during CY 2021, there was also a reported 36% increase in Early Syphilis cases in females of whom 90% were child-bearing age. Read more.

Electronic Exchange Requirements Move Closer to Reality

After several COVID-related delays, the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) has set a December 31 deadline for the healthcare industry to support apps that store records electronically, such as Apple Health. This is part of the 21st Century Cures Act, and it works both ways: Health IT developers will need standardized APIs and FHIR technology to support data exchange and interoperability, and providers will be expected to use APIs and FHIR technology. Patients won’t be required to use apps, but medical offices will at least have to support electronic exchanges using the FHIR standards. What remains to be seen is how this will be enforced.

Funding for Nurse Practitioners in Underserved Communities

The University of Pennsylvania has announced the Leonard A. Lauder Community Care Nurse Practitioner Program, which will recruit and prepare a diverse cadre of nurse practitioners to provide primary care to individuals and families in underserved communities. The $125 million donation by Leonard A. Lauder, chairman emeritus of The Estée Lauder Companies, to create this first-of-its-kind, tuition-free program is the largest gift ever to an American nursing school. Lauder is a Penn alumnus.

Licensing Tools for Health Professionals

The Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP) has created the following web-based tools for certain health professions:

  • Online Resource for Licensure of Health Professionals. As telehealth usage increased during the pandemic, FORHP funded new work with the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards to reduce the burden of multi-state licensure. The site provides up-to-date information on emergency regulation and licensing in each state for psychologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists assistants and social workers.

Mobilizing Health Care Workforce via Telehealth. was created by the Federation of State Medical Boards through the CARES Act and the FORHP-supported Licensure Portability Grant Program. The site provides up-to-date information on emergency regulation and licensing by state as well as a provider portal to connect volunteer health care professionals to state agencies and health care entities.

COVID-19 Can Destroy Placenta and Lead to Stillbirths

New research bolsters evidence from small case reports and confirms that placenta damage rather than an infection of the fetus is the likely cause of many COVID-19-related stillbirths. Researchers in 12 countries, including the U.S., analyzed placental and autopsy tissue from stillbirths and newborns who died shortly after birth. The cases all involved unvaccinated women who had COVID-19 during their pregnancy. Researchers found that placentas were infected and extensively destroyed. Read more.

Contract Pharmacy Restrictions Implemented

This week, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) announced that it is implementing contract pharmacy restrictions under 340B. Fortunately, (and despite the somewhat confusing wording in the announcement) all FQHCs and other Federal “grantees” are exempted from these rules. GSK marks the 14th drug maker to implement 340B contract pharmacy restrictions and the 10th to explicitly exempt Federal “grantees” (which includes both FQHC grantees and look-alikes). Notably, GSK has informed hospitals that they can avoid the contract pharmacy restrictions if they provide data about their 340B drugs to the 340BESP website.