How NIH Plans to Share American Indian and Alaska Native COVID Data

Funding News Edition: September 07, 2022
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COVID researchers, check the July 29, 2022 Tribal Consultation Report and Response to learn how NIH plans to share American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) clinical data through the National COVID Cohort Collaborative (N3C) platform.

To better understand whether and how to make AI/AN data in the N3C available to researchers, staff in NIH’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) initiated formal Tribal Consultation in December 2021 and held a virtual discussion with Tribal leaders in February 2022. The resulting Report summarizes Tribal input and NCATS responses.

Based on Tribal Consultation feedback, NCATS intends to remove certain privacy measures on AI/AN data in the N3C so that the benefits of the data can be realized for individuals identified as AI/AN. The N3C Key Outcomes page covers upcoming changes to the Data Use Request process, data protections for ZIP codes that overlap with Tribal communities, and the N3C Data User Code of Conduct. Researchers must attest that they understand the N3C contains no Tribal affiliation data and that use of AI/AN data and ZIP code information to make assumptions about Tribal affiliation is not valid or appropriate.

Find full details in the Report. NCATS staff thanked the Tribal Nations and leaders for their insights. As issues for discussion arise, the N3C and Tribal Nations will continue dialogue.

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