The Dartmouth Atlasof Health Carehttp://www.dartmouthatlas.org/Lauren Minnick
Purpose and Use of GIS¡ The Dartmouth Project uses GIS to map Medicaredata in order to analyze and highlight variationsin the distribution of healthcare in the US.¡ The project hopes to improve the disparities inhealth and the healthcare system by highlightingthese differences with an interactive interface.
The homepage offers an example map (Coronary Bypass GraftingProcedures per 1,000 Medicare Enrollees, 2007) which the user can editby customizing the report or adjusting the layers of the map.
In this screenshot I have utilized the customize option to change the regiontype from hospital referral region to state. The user is also able to adjust theYear and gender.
The navigation bar at the top of the homepage allows the user to create there ownmap. One can choose to start with 3 options: data by region, data by hospital, anddata by topic.A search bar at the bottom of the home page also allows the user tosearch for data by zip code.
Some of the data by topic options are listed above.
I chose Quality/Effective care, which generated a map of thePercentage of Diabetic Medicare Enrollees Receiving AppropriateManagement, By Race and Type of Screening.
Above I chose to customize the map by changing the type of screeningfrom Hemoglobin A1c to a Blood Lipids Test. Based on the adjusted map,it appears that more enrollees who receive a Blood Lipid Test arereceiving appropriate management of their Diabetes.
Conclusion-The Dartmouth Atlas of Healthcare provides a very user friendly tool foraccessing analytic maps relating to Medicare data.-The site offers a large variety of analytic maps and allows the user tobrowse by region, hospital, or topic. I found the maps clear and easy toread and the tools for customizing the map and adding/changinglayers were extremely intuitive.-While the stated goal of the site is to “help policymakers, the media,health care analysts and others improve their understanding of theefficiency and effectiveness of our health care system,” the system’sease of use prevents it from alienating someone with a casual interest.
References:Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Jan. 2013.