Birth Data News - March Edition


Birth Data News

Principal Source of Payment

Minnesota birth records report Medicaid as the principal source of payment at a rate 21% lower than the national average according to the National Center for Health Statistics. 

When the Office of the State Register data quality staff analyzed the data, they identified several hospitals that are choosing “other” as the principal source of payment and filling in the text box.  We noticed that almost all the responses in the text box belong in one of the standard categories.

For example, Medicaid covers Medical Assistance.  HealthPartners and BlueCross Blue Shield could be either private insurance or Medicaid (Medical Assistance).  Your billing office should be able to confirm the correct source of payment so it can be accurately recorded on the birth record. 

To help you choose the right selection, we are clarifying the choices for the Principal Source of Payment. 

·         Medicaid (Medical Assistance)

·         Private Insurance (BlueCross BlueShield, Aetna, HealthPartners)

·         Self-Pay (no third party identified)

·         Indian Health Service


·         Other Government (federal, state, local)  e.g. MinnesotaCare

·         Other  (no standard choice available)

·         Unknown

Please let us know if there are barriers to confirming this information with your billing office prior to finalizing the birth record by sending an email to


Here’s a Way to Have Your Say!

Do you want to tell us what you think about birth registration? Maybe make a few suggestions about improving the birth registration system or learn more about how legislative changes affect birth registration? Your thoughts, challenges, insights and ideas are important to us.

MDH is seeking partner-volunteers to participate in a birth registration and data quality advisory group. This group will meet quarterly and although we’d love to see you in person, please consider joining even if you can only attend via conference call. 

Look for more information at the Excellence in Birth Registration Conference on May 2nd.



 The 2013 Excellence in Birth Registration Training and Conference will be held Thursday, May 2nd, at the Mall of America in Bloomington. This site was chosen for its convenient, easy-to-find-location and ample free parking. Driving directions to MOA.

We will employ an exciting new interactive format at this year’s conference to present information about paternity establishment, birth data quality, surrogacy and gestational agreements. We also will provide a forum for your birth registration challenges. Minnesota is recognized as a national leader in collecting and reporting birth data, and the Excellence in Birth Registration Awards will be presented only at the conference.

The cost for the conference is $48 per person which includes a light breakfast, lunch and all conference materials. Participants who register together at the same time may take advantage of a discounted rate of $45 each.

Advance registration is required.

Please register online at  before Monday, April 22nd.  Same day registration is not available.



We would like to begin collecting information about water births. When entering a birth record where the delivery occurred under water, please check Other, and enter “water birth” in the Characteristics of labor section of the birth record on the Mother’s Medical Information II page in MR&C.