Health United States 2020-2021

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Health, United States?

Health, United States is the report on the health status of the nation, submitted on behalf of the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to the President and the Congress of the United States.

The encyclopedic nature of Health, United States makes it a valuable resource for a wide array of health statistics. In addition to presenting key findings from the major data systems of the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), Health, United States contains relevant health data from other federal agencies, as well as private and global sources.

Health, United States focuses primarily on trends in health statistics. Comparable data must be available for at least two points in time and available at the national level. Data are shown by age group, sex, racial and ethnic group, geography, poverty status, and education level, whenever possible.

For a description of the individual report sections, see


What subjects are covered in Health, United States?


The Health, United States series features a Chartbook with charts organized around four congressionally mandated subject areas: health status and determinants, utilization of health resources, health care resources, and health care expenditures and payers. In Health, United States, 2019, the 20 charts include:

  • Mortality: Life expectancy at birth, infant mortality, causes of death, maternal deaths, drug overdose deaths, suicides
  • Natality: Teen births, preterm births
  • Morbidity and risk factors: Heart disease and cancer prevalence, tobacco product use, asthma, hypertension, functional limitation
  • Health care utilization: Cancer screening, prescription drug use, unmet need due to cost
  • Health care resources: Dentists, physicians in patient care
  • Health care expenditures & payers: Personal health care expenditures, health care insurance coverage, supplemental Medicare coverage

Trend Tables

Health, United States also features online-only, supplemental trend tables that highlight major trends in health statistics in the four congressionally mandated subject areas. An important criterion used in selecting trend tables is the availability of comparable national data over a period of several years. In Health, United States, 2019, there are 49 trend tables that highlight trends in subjects such as natality, mortality, disease prevalence, health risk factors, use of ambulatory and inpatient care, health care personnel and facilities, national and state health expenditures, and health insurance coverage. These trend tables include health indicators featured in the Chartbook and on NCHS FastStats, which provides quick access to statistics on topics of public health importance.

For a summary of major findings from the trend tables, visit the At-a-glance Table page.

To explore the Health, United States, 2019 trend tables by subject and population subgroup, visit the Data Finder page.


What additional Health, United States  data products are available on the website?

In addition to Chartbook and supplemental trend tables, the Health, United States website contains the Health, United States Spotlight Infographics. The Spotlights provide data visualizations of selected health indicators from Health, United States.


How do I download Health, United States spreadsheets?

Health, United States  spreadsheets are available for download from the Data Finder page. All available spreadsheets are listed under the “Excel” column.

  1. Click on the Microsoft Excel spreadsheet icon excel icon next to the trend table or figure of interest.
  2. Some users will see an FTP login screen. If the login screen appears, login as “anonymous” and leave the password blank. Click “ok.”

Users with Internet Explorer may experience difficulties when accessing links to Excel files on the FTP server. If you encounter these issues, right click on the Excel link and save the file before opening.


Who do I contact for questions about Health, United States  or related data products?

If you have questions about Health, United States  or related data products, please email You can also contact:

Office of Information Services
Information Dissemination Staff
National Center for Health Statistics
3311 Toledo Road, Room 4551, MS P08
Hyattsville, MD 20782–2064
Phone: 1–800–CDC–INFO (1–800–232–4636)
TTY: 1–888–232–6348


How do I receive updates about Health, United States ?

For e-mail updates on Health, United States  releases, subscribe online at: