DATA PLAYBOOK California Health and Human Services Agency

Resource Library

  1. CHHS Information Strategic Plan
  2. CHHS Open Data Handbook
  3. CHHS Data Sharing Framework
  4. CHHS Data De-Identification Guidelines
  5. Select Public Data Resources
  6. Project and Program Management Toolkit
  7. U.S. Digital Services Playbook
  8. Select Training Resources
  9. Select Technical Resources

1. CHHS Information Strategic Plan

CHHS manages a diverse portfolio of programs and technical infrastructure that requires a complex level of management, operational capabilities and vendor support to effectively meet the expectations of its clients and stakeholders. Aligning the programmatic and operational strategies of the Agency and its Departments is an immense undertaking, considering:

  • The scope and complexity of CHHS programs and initiatives;
  • The diversity of project management and technical expertise amongst Departments; and
  • The current state of the technology environment and the historical approach to siloed designs.

The evolution of technology has provided CHHS, its Departments, local government partners and providers with a unique opportunity to transform the operational paradigm from one focused on the autonomy of individual Departments or programs to one governed in a way that maximizes benefit to the Agency as a community. This convergence of business and technology, when coordinated and managed appropriately, will better enable more client-centric services, more efficient programmatic execution and better fiscal responsibility. The Agency strives to provide a strategic direction that will evolve the manner in which stakeholders within the Agency collaborate to drive better informed investment decisions, resulting in a more effective utilization of assets and human capital. As the costs and risks of technology have grown, the necessity for a more effective approach to the management of these expensive and critical systems has become a focal point of both the state and the federal government.

Download the Strategic Plan

Download the Master Data Management (MDM) Strategy Addendum


2. CHHS Open Data Handbook

The CHHS Open Data Handbook provides guidelines to identify, review, prioritize, and prepare publishable CHHS data for access by the public via the CHHS Open Data Portal—with a foundational emphasis on value, quality, data and metadata standards, and governance.

The handbook focuses on general guidelines and thoughtful processes but also provides tools and resources that operationalize those processes. CHHS and its Departments and offices will use this handbook in their work as they consider various perspectives involved in governing business processes, data, and technology assets.

Access the Handbook


3. CHHS Data Sharing Framework

Data sharing at CHHS is governed by the CHHS data exchange agreement. The CHHS Data Exchange Agreement is bifurcated into two parts—one master agreement with general legal boilerplate language and subordinate “Business Use Case Proposals” containing the specific business case to document each data exchange under the master agreement. The Business Use Case Proposal includes information such as data elements, intended use, etc. The master agreement, when coupled with the Business Use Case Proposal, forms the complete, standardized, legally-compliant data sharing agreement.

Contact your Department’s data coordinator for information on how to find and exchange CHHS data.

Download the data sharing materials:


4. CHHS Data De-Identification Guidelines

The CHHS Data De-Identification Guidelines describe a procedure to be used by Departments and offices in the Agency to assess data for public release. As part of the guidelines, specific actions that may be taken for each step in the procedure are described. These steps are intended to assist Departments in assuring that data is de-identified for purposes of public release that meet the requirements of the California Information Practices Act (IPA) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to prevent the disclosure of personal information.

The CHHS Data De-Identification Guidelines are focused on the assessment of aggregate or summary data for purposes of de-identification and public release. Aggregate data means collective data that relates to a group or category of services or individuals. The aggregate data may be shown in table form as counts, percentages, rates, averages, or other statistical groupings.

Download the Guidelines


5. Select Public Data Resources

Public data resources are available from a number of online sources, including the federal government and non-profit organizations. Following is a partial list of select data resources that can help contribute to data projects and analyses.

  • USAFacts.org – A data-driven portrait of the American population, our government’s finances, and government’s impact on society that uses federal, state, and local data from over 70 sources.
  • Healthdata.gov – Dedicated to making high value health data more accessible to entrepreneurs, researchers, and policy makers in the hopes of better health outcomes for all.
  • CIA World Fact Book - Provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.
  • openFDA – Makes it easier to get access to publicly available FDA data. FDA’s goal is to make it simple for an application, mobile device, web developer, or researcher to use data from the FDA.
  • Census Reporter – A Knight News Challenge-funded project to make it easier for journalists to write stories using information from the U.S. Census bureau. Place profiles and comparison pages provide a friendly interface for navigating data, including visualizations for a more useful first look.
  • CalEnviro Screen - A mapping tool that helps identify California communities that are most affected by many sources of pollution, and where people are often especially vulnerable to pollution’s effects.
  • California Healthy Places Index - A tool to explore community conditions that predict life expectancy. It contains user-friendly mapping and data resources at the census tract level across California.
  • CHHS Open Data Portal - Offers access to standardized data that can be easily retrieved, combined, downloaded, sorted, searched, analyzed, redistributed and re-used by individuals, business, researchers, journalists, developers, and government to process, trend, and innovate.

6. Project and Program Management Toolkit

The California Government Operations Agency has developed resources to guide, support, and integrate innovation and drive continuous improvement. The resources were developed using the “Lean” concept. Lean is a continuous improvement methodology based on five key principles to eliminate waste and increase value, designed to improve processes and quality from the point of view of the customer. Lean, refined over decades in the manufacturing and service sectors, offers a simple but highly effective system that can be implemented in all areas of an organization using the expertise of the organization’s own employees.

These resources are intended to achieve the following objectives:

  • Continuous improvement as a standard practice and expectation for improving organizational performance.
  • Standardization of business process improvement methodologies, training and resources across departments.
  • Managers and employees see themselves as partners in continuous improvement.
  • Contribute to the recruitment, development and retention of California state employees at all levels.

Download select toolkit materials:


7. U.S. Digital Services Playbook

The American people expect to interact with government through digital channels such as websites, email, and mobile applications. By building better digital services that meet the needs of the people that use our services, we can make the delivery of our policy and programs more effective.

One way to advance smarter digital service delivery is by putting the right processes and practices in place to drive outcomes and accountability and allow people and companies to do their best work. The US Digital Services (USDS) Playbook documents these best practices and processes.

The Digital Services Playbook identifies a series of “plays” drawn from successful best practices from the private sector and government that, if followed together, will help government build effective digital services. The plays outline an approach to delivering services that increases our ability to be flexible, iterative and, most importantly, to focus on the needs of the people that use our services.

Access the Digital Services Playbook


8. Select Training Resources

There are a number of training resources available from reputable governmental and non-governmental sources. Following is a partial list of select training resources that can help contribute to data projects and analyses.


9. Select Technical Resources

There are a number of technical resources available from reputable governmental and non-governmental sources. Following is a partial list of select technical resources that can help contribute to data projects and analyses.

  • databasic.io – A suite of easy-to-use web tools for beginners that introduce concepts of working with data. These simple tools make it easy to work with data in fun ways, so you can learn how to find great stories to tell.
  • D3.js – Data-Driven Documents D3 is a JavaScript library for manipulating documents based on data. D3 helps you bring data to life using HTML, SVG, and CSS. D3’s emphasis on web standards gives you the full capabilities of modern browsers without tying yourself to a proprietary framework, combining powerful visualization components and a data-driven approach to DOM manipulation.
  • Data Visualization Catalogue – A library of different information visualization types, how each method works and what it is best suited for.
  • Vega – A visualization grammar, a declarative language for creating, saving, and sharing interactive visualization designs. With Vega, you can describe the visual appearance and interactive behavior of a visualization in a JSON format and generate web-based views using Canvas or SVG.
  • Color Contrast Grid – Test many foreground and background color combos for compliance with WCAG 2.0 minimum contrast.