VDH and the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association Launch Community Health Data Portal

The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association (VHHA) have launched a new portal that will dramatically improve access to health data for public health, health care providers, and community partners.

VDH and VHHA partnered with the Center for Applied Research and Engagement (CARES) to develop this portal. The Virginia Community Health Improvement Data Portal is a tool that provides users with comprehensive information on the health status of their communities.

“The key to obtaining meaningful results is starting with meaningful, measurable data,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Colin Greene. “The new portal allows access to a broad array of such information, spanning the spectrum of social determinants of health, along with crucial health outcomes. I look forward to the portal’s role in improving health outcomes and reducing disparities.”

The portal allows users to track health-related data and analyze specific areas of concern, such as infant mortality, chronic disease or injuries. Users can identify trends and analyze data at a granular level and can visualize data on maps that meet the specific needs of a project. The portal can be accessed at vdh.virginia.gov/data/ and phvi.wpengine.com/data-portal/.

“Improving health in Virginia begins with communities coming together to review health data and identifying concerning trends and disparities,” said Dr. Lilian Peake, Virginia’s state epidemiologist. “I am excited about this new resource that will make that exponentially easier. It will allow local health departments, hospitals and community partners to spend more of their time developing local interventions rather than data gathering.”

The Partnering for a Healthy Virginia (PHV) Initiative coordinates efforts between VHHA and its member hospitals and health systems, VDH, local health departments, local jurisdictions, the medical community, and other stakeholders to address community health improvement. VDH and VHHA worked together to develop a core set of indicators that can be readily accessed via the Virginia Community Health Improvement Data Portal. Additional data indicators will be added as the project continues.

“Our approach to strengthening public health and wellbeing in Virginia takes many forms, including the Partnering for a Healthy Virginia Initiative. On projects such as PHV, we work with our member hospitals and health systems along with other partners and stakeholders as part of our ongoing effort to make Virginia the healthiest state in the nation,” said VHHA President and CEO Sean T. Connaughton. “No matter the project, our efforts are informed by data and what the metrics tell us because that information helps us understand the scope of particular health challenges and identify optimal improvement strategies. This new Virginia Community Health Improvement Data Portal is a prime example of pursuing a data-informed approach to enhancing public health and we are delighted to partner with VDH on this worthwhile project.”

CARES is an affiliate of the University of Missouri, with more than 200 years of combined experience in geographic information systems, programming, and data analysis and visualization.

For more information about community health improvement in Virginia, visit virginiawellbeing.com/. For more information about the Partnering for a Health Virginia Initiative, visit phvi.wpengine.com/. For more information about CARES, visit careshq.org/about/.