Step 1: Review Data

Take advantage of high-quality data to shape your public health efforts.

Strategically identifying the multiple levels of factors that drive health outcomes in your community is the first step in selecting the appropriate evidence-based program for your organization to implement. You can make use of high-quality data [definition] to identify and understand the underlying causes of health problems as well as the health-related needs of your community.

Using data also helps your organization save resources. By leveraging existing knowledge, you can make a sound case for internal audiences as well as external ones, including funders and other potential allies.

Develop a detailed picture of your community's health needs.

The links below offer data from local, state, and national sources.

  • Use locally generated data to understand the health needs and related issues of your community in greater detail.
  • Use state or national data to make comparisons and demonstrate need for a particular group or a particular health issue.

Remember, using a combination of data collected by others and by your organization may help your organization save resources.

Select Resources

Use the links below to find statistics and reports about your community. For additional resources about how to use data, click here.

Boston
Boston Regional Health Status Indicators Report

Health indicators for the Boston region of Massachusetts, as well as comparisons to other regions of the state.

The Health of Boston

The annual Health of Boston Report provides a review of selected health conditions, risk behaviors, and social determinants of health.  It presents a broad picture of health in the city and identifies individuals and communities at greatest risk for certain conditions.  The reports do not attempt to identify causality or make recommendations.  Instead, they provide information needed to stimulate dialogue among individuals and within communities.

Fact Sheet on Tobacco Cessation and Prevention in Boston (PDF) PDF file

The Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program works to reduce the health and economic burden of tobacco use. This PDF fact sheet covers the city of Boston.

Latinos in Massachusetts Selected Areas: Boston

The Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy publishes periodic reports of demographic trends using the decennial census and, more recently, the American Community Survey. 

Boston Indicators Project

The Project draws data from the wealth of information and research generated by the region’s public agencies, civic institutions, think tanks, and community based organizations. 

The State of Black Boston (PDF) PDF file

In collaboration with the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts and the Boston chapter of the NAACP, the Trotter Institute has prepared the State of Black Boston report, which provides an overview of select social, demographic, and economic characteristics and trends associated with Boston’s Black population.

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Greater Brockton
Community Health Needs Assessment for the Greater Brockton CHNA

The Southeast Center for Healthy Communities conducted this community health assessment to uncover community health needs, identify vulnerable community groups, and determine gaps in community health programming.  

Fact Sheet on Tobacco Cessation and Prevention in Brockton (PDF) PDF file

The Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program works to reduce the health and economic burden of tobacco use. This PDF fact sheet covers the city of Brockton.

Latinos in Massachusetts Selected Areas: Brockton (PDF) PDF file

The Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy publishes periodic reports of demographic trends using the decennial census and, more recently, the American Community Survey.   

Opioid-related Poisonings in Brockton

Data is provided by the Brockton Mayor's Opioid Overdose Prevention Coalition  

Regional Health Status Indicators Southeast Massachusetts (PDF) PDF file

Health indicators for the southeast region of Massachusetts as well as comparisons to other regions of the state.

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Lawrence
Northeast MA Regional Health Status Indicators Report

Health indicators for the northeast region of Massachusetts as well as comparisons to other regions of the state.

    Fact Sheet on Tobacco Cessation and Prevention in Lawrence (PDF) PDF file

    The Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program works to reduce the health and economic burden of tobacco use. This fact sheet covers the city of Lawrence.

    Lawrence Mammography Pap Stats, CDC, March 2010 (PDF) PDF file

    It includes statistics on mammography and pap smear rates by race, and comes from the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center.

    Latinos in Massachusetts Selected Areas: Lawrence

    The Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy publishes periodic reports of demographic trends using the decennial census and, more recently, the American Community Survey. 

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    Greater Lowell
    Greater Lowell Community Health Needs Assessment (PDF) PDF file

    On behalf of Lowell General Hospital (LGH), Saints Medical Center (SMC) and the Greater Lowell Health Alliance (GLHA), a team of UMass Lowell researchers and students conducted a community health needs assessment study to distinguish the unmet medical and public health needs within the Greater Lowell community.

      Fact Sheet on Tobacco Cessation and Prevention in Lowell (PDF) PDF file

    The Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program works to reduce the health and economic burden of tobacco use. This PDF fact sheet covers the city of Lowell.

    Latinos in Massachusetts Selected Areas: Lowell

    The Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy publishes periodic reports of demographic trends using the decennial census and, more recently, the American Community Survey.   

    Regional Health Status Indicators Northeast Massachusetts

    Health indicators for the Northeast region of Massachusetts as well as comparisons to other regions of the state.

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    Worcester
    Central MA Regional Health Status Indicators Report

    Health indicators for the central region of Massachusetts, as well as comparisons to other regions of the state.

    Health of Worcester Report (PDF) PDF file

    This report by the Worcester Division of Public Health provides a "snapshot" of the City's health. These indicators are focused specifically on the areas in which the city needs the most improvement.  

    Worcester Indicators Report 2008 (PDF) PDF file

    Common Pathways created the Worcester Indicators Report to stimulate discussion and offer action steps to improve the quality of life in Worcester.

    Fact Sheet on Tobacco Cessation and Prevention in Worcester (PDF) PDF file

    The Massachusetts Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Program works to reduce the health and economic burden of tobacco use. This fact sheet covers the city of Worcester.

    Latinos in Massachusetts Selected Areas: Worcester

    The Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy publishes Periodic reports of demographic trends using the decennial census and, more recently, the American Community Survey.

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    MA State Resources
    Massachusetts Cancer Registry

    Each year, the Massachusetts Cancer Registry (MCR) issues a report called Cancer Incidence and Mortality in Massachusetts. They also publish a City/Town Supplement series with town-specific cancer incidence information. Use these evidence-based resources to find cancer-related data for the state as a whole, or for your specific community.

    MassCHIP (Massachusetts Community Health Information Profile)

    MassCHIP is a dynamic, user-friendly information service. It provides free, online access to research-tested data on health and social indicators for the state of Massachusetts. Use this site to:

    • review the health status indicators for your city or town
    • learn about the health needs of particular populations within your community
    • evaluate health programs

    Common Health for the Commonwealth (PDF) PDF file

    This report uses evidence-based research to measure and encourage activities that address health and health care for individuals and whole populations in Massachusetts. It shows that our "common health" is affected not only by access to health care, but also by social, economic, and environmental factors.

    Key goals of the report are to:

    • enhance public health infrastructure.
    • focus on the disparities that exist between those who have access to care and prevention and those who do not.

    Massachusetts Health Survey Program

    The program collects information about adults and youth on topics that are vital statewide and nationally, such as:

    • racial discrepancies in health and health care
    • trends in chronic diseases, and
    • health risk factors.
    Health of Massachusetts

    Data on the health of Massachusetts residents, including statistical information and policy perspectives from leading experts.  Designed to inform policy makers and key community partners, this report contains more than 200 charts and draws information from more than 50 sources.

    The Status of Childhood Weight in Massachusetts, 2009 (PDF) PDF file

    The goal of this report is to share BMI data widely with all community leaders so it can
    be used for sound community planning, program development and public health
    monitoring.

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    National Resources
    State Cancer Profiles (Cancer Control P.L.A.N.E.T.)

    One of the five major areas of the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Control P.L.A.N.E.T. (CCP) web site. It includes interactive graphs, maps, and support data on many different US cancer topics.

    Partners in Information Access for the Public Health Workforce

    This is a collaboration of US government agencies, public health organizations, and health sciences libraries.

    CDC's National Center for Health Statistics

    Information from the nation's principal health statistics agency.

    US Census Bureau

    State and county quick facts and demographic data.

    Data.gov

    The purpose of Data.gov is to increase public access to high value, machine readable datasets generated by the Executive Branch of the Federal Government.

    California Health Interview Survey (CHIS)

    CHIS is the nation's largest state health survey. Conducted every two years on a wide range of health topics, CHIS data gives a detailed picture of the health and health care needs of California's large and diverse population.

    Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS)

    From the National Cancer Institute, HINTS collects nationally representative data to monitor changes in health communication. Program planners can obtain the data they need to overcome barriers to health information usage across populations and create more effective communication strategies.

    KIDS COUNT Data Center

    KIDS COUNT is a project of the Casey Foundation to track the status of children in the United States at the national and state level.  

    Health Data Initiative

    HHS and the Institute of Medicine have launched a national initiative to help consumers and communities get more value out of the Nation’s wealth of health data.

    Data Resource Center for Child & Adolescent Health

    This website provides children's health care data gathered from surveys of their parents, through the National Survey of Children’s Health and the National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs.

    The Rise of Asian Americans (PDF) PDF file

    This report by the Pew Research Center paints a comprehensive portrait of Asian-Americans. The analysis makes comparisons between Asian immigrants and U.S.-born Asians, as well as among the six largest Asian-American country of origin subgroups—Chinese Americans, Filipino Americans, Indian Americans, Vietnamese Americans, Korean Americans and Japanese Americans.

     

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