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Table 1-1. Categories and Definitions Promulgated by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the U.S. Bureau of the Census

Race, Ethnicity, and Language Data: Standardization for Health Care Quality Improvement

OMB CategoryOMB Definition of CategoryCensus Definition of Category
American Indian or Alaska NativeA person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America), and who maintains tribal affiliation or community attachmentPeople having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America), and who maintain tribal affiliation or community attachment, including, for example, Rosebud Sioux, Chippewa, or Navajo
AsianA person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia,Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and VietnamPeople having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent including, for example, people who have indicated their race as Asian Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese, Burmese, Hmong, Pakistani, or Thai
Black or African AmericanA person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa. Terms such as "Haitian"; or "Negro"; can be used in addition to "Black or African American";People having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa, including, for example, Black, African American, Negro, Nigerian, or Haitian
Hispanic or LatinoA person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race. The term, "Spanish origin,"; can be used in addition to "Hispanic or Latino";A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific IslanderA person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific IslandsPeople having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands,including people who identify as Native Hawaiian, Chamorro, Tahitian, Mariana Islander, or Chuukese
WhiteA person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North AfricaPeople having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa, including Irish, German, Italian, Lebanese, Near Easterner, Arab, or Polish
Some Other Race All other responses not classifiable in the White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander race categories; respondents providing write-in entries such as multiracial, mixed, interracial, "American,"; or a Hispanic/Latino group (e.g., Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban)

Note: The Indian Health Service uses a narrower definition applicable to Alaska Natives and American Indians that have an affiliation with a tribal group of the United States to establish eligibility for their programs; thus, it does not include indigenous people of Latin America or Canada. "Any individual who (1), irrespective of whether he or she lives on or near a reservation, is a member of a tribe, band, or other organized group of Indians, including those tribes, bands, or groups terminated since 1940 and those recognized now or in the future by the State in which they reside, or who is a descendent, in the first or second degree, of any such member, or (2) is an Eskimo or Aleut or other Alaska Native, or (3) is considered by the Secretary of the Interior to be an Indian for any purpose, or (4) is determined to be an Indian under regulations promulgated by the Secretary" (The Indian Healthcare Improvement Act, Public Law 94-437, 25 U.S.C. 1603(c)-(d)).

Sources: OMB, 1997b; U.S. Census Bureau, 2000.

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Current as of March 2010
Internet Citation: Table 1-1. Categories and Definitions Promulgated by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the U.S. Bureau of the Census: Race, Ethnicity, and Language Data: Standardization for Health Care Quality Improvement . March 2010. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/research/findings/final-reports/iomracereport/reldata1tab1-1.html