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Data Requests and Data Use Agreements
King County DCHS may release de-identified data from the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) to entities with an approved Data Use Agreement for purposes authorized by the HMIS Steering Committee. Each Data Use Agreement is specific to the individual project, and all projects require annual review.
Review Process and Criteria
King County DCHS and the HMIS Steering Committee conduct a detailed review of every request for access to de-identified data and makes a determination on a case by case basis. Requests for de-identified data will be granted only if the project cannot be complete with aggregate information, and the data request are of a scale to not identify data. When possible, data requests will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. However, King County DCHS staff will have discretion on the order in which requests are filled.
If the data use request is approved by the HMIS Steering Committee then a Data Use Agreement will be executed between King County DCHS and the Organization / Agency requesting the data. Approved requests are held to the highest ethical standards and must agree to the stipulations detailed in the Data Use Agreement.
Please review the HMIS Data Standards if you are unsure of which data elements are available. Requestors are encouraged to submit their requests with as much advance notice as possible to allow time for request review, execution of all related contracts and agreements, and delivery of the data. Requestors are also encouraged to think through your entire request and ask for all aspects of what you expect to need. It is faster and easier for DCHS to do multiple analyses or a single data pull at one time rather than in batches, which means you get your information sooner. We do understand that sometimes the first batch of results leads to more questions, but a thoughtful process in advance can be more efficient.
Data requests that take two or fewer hours of total staff time to prepare will be free to the requester. For data requests that take more than two hours, DCHS staff time in excess of the first two hours will be charged at $100/hour, with a 3-hour minimum. The two-hour time limit is per calendar year and is specific to the requester, not the organization. Requesters from the same organization but who are clearly working on different projects will be treated as separate requesters.
Human Services departments in local jurisdictions in Washington State, the Washington State Department of Social and Human Services, other King County government departments, and other public governmental agencies in King County, will be exempt from fees to cover the costs of routine data requests. This includes internal requests from other DCHS divisions. However, all other agencies and individuals will be covered by this policy.