Release of the national healthcare big data in China: a historic leap in clinical research

Zhongheng Zhang


At the beginning of 2017, the National scientific data sharing platform for population and health (NSDSPPH) released 49.1 TB data on Chinese population and health. The data comprise 280 million observations involving the fields of biomedicine, basic medicine, clinical medicine, public health, traditional Chinese medicine, pharmacology, population and reproductive health (http://www.ncmi.cn/1).
NSDSPPH is a major project of the national science and technology infrastructure. It was launched in 2003. Clinical investigators may be interested in clinical data contained in NSDSPPH. The clinical data center is jointly established by Peking Union medical college hospital and Chinese PLA general hospital. After more than 10 years of endeavor, the clinical data center has become more and more sophisticated. Clinical data were collected from hospitals nationwide with strict criteria for data entry. Data are presented in several forms such as raw data, summary data and statistical report. The clinical data are accessible to the public and researchers. Additionally, the center also provides services of statistical analysis and data mining. Numerous scientific papers have been published using the database. Some examples include the correlation between waist circumference and respiratory function in teenagers (1), epidemiological study on coexisting prehypertension and prediabetes in northern China (2), and the Association between γ-glutamyltransferase and prehypertension (3).

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