DPH Announces New Health Indicators Added to My Healthy Community Data Portal
DOVER – The Division of Public Health (DPH) announced updates to its My Healthy Community data portal. DPH launched My Healthy Community earlier this year to allow Delawareans to access information about the overall health of their communities. My Healthy Community delivers neighborhood-focused population health, environmental and social determinant of health data to the public, and allows users to navigate the information at the smallest geographic area available, and understand and explore data about the factors that influence health.
Since launching the data portal in May 2019, DPH has added several new health indicators, including community safety, maternal and child health, healthy lifestyles, health services utilization, infectious diseases, lead poisoning, suicide and homicide. These data indicators also serve to highlight Delaware’s progress in meeting health care benchmarks as part of DHSS’s ongoing efforts to bring transparency to health care spending and to set targets for improving the health of Delawareans.
“When communities become aware of the level at which these issues are occurring in their neighborhoods, it can spur action that can improve the quality of life for current and future generations,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “We highly encourage Delawareans to explore the data on the portal – especially the recently added datasets – to better understand their community’s health and the environment in which they live.”
Residents can search health indicators by street address, ZIP code, census tract, neighborhood, town/city, county and state. In addition, they can compare their community’s health measures with other Delaware communities, their county, and the state as a whole, as well as view data trends over time. To ensure compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), not all data can be made available at every level, although the system is designed to provide data for the smallest geographic area when possible.
My Healthy Community was developed through a partnership among several DPH programs, the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), the Department of Health and Social Services’ Division of Substance Use and Mental Health (DSAMH), and the Delaware Health Care Commission (HCC). DPH’s contractor for this project was Green River of Brattleboro, Vermont. Future funding has been secured from DNREC for data on vulnerable populations and climate change, and from DPH through CDC grants for violent death data and internal sharing of timely substance use disorder data.
The data portal encompasses the Delaware Environmental Public Health Tracking Network (DEPHTN), and benefits from participation in an Environmental Public Health Tracking Peer-to-Peer Fellowship program through the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), with the Kentucky Department of Health as DEPHTN mentor.
Delaware residents can now explore a variety of data indicators in the following categories:
• Air quality
• Public and private (well) drinking water data
• Diabetes and hypertension prevalence
Mental Health and Substance Use:
• Mental health
• Suicide prevalence
• Adult excessive drinking
• Tobacco use
• Drug overdose deaths
• Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) data
• Suspected non-fatal drug overdoses
• Youth substance use
• Youth use of prescription pain medications without a prescription
• Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS)
• Health status
• Physical activity and weight
• Youth nutrition
• Violent and accidental deaths
Maternal and Child Health:
• Infant mortality
• Teen pregnancy
• Pre-term births
• Lead exposure
Health Services Utilization:
• Mortality amenable to health care
• Colorectal cancer screening
• Nationally notifiable conditions
• Hepatitis C
Access the My Healthy Community data portal at MyHealthyCommunity.dhss.delaware.gov. Comments can be submitted via an online feedback form.
The Delaware Department of Health and Social Services is committed to improving the quality of the lives of Delaware’s citizens by promoting health and well-being, fostering self-sufficiency, and protecting vulnerable populations. DPH, a division of DHSS, urges Delawareans to make healthier choices with the 5-2-1 Almost None campaign: eat 5 or more fruits and vegetables each day, have no more than 2 hours of recreational screen time each day (includes TV, computer, gaming), get 1 or more hours of physical activity each day, and drink almost no sugary beverages.