October 15, 2011 (Vol. 31, No. 18)
Strong Points: Opportunities to upload and share data; interactive maps
Weak Points: Not entirely supported by all browsers
During the past few years the topic of healthcare reform has scarcely left the headlines. You have probably heard about the problems facing primary care physicians and the benefits of extending health insurance to populations who previously went without, but you may have been left wondering about some other aspects of healthcare in this country. For instance, where exactly are the regions facing a shortage of primary care physicans? And what are the healthcare demographics of different communities? If you’re looking to find such descriptions of the health landscape in the U.S., then look no further than…well, HealthLandscape. This online, interactive atlas provides four interfaces to promote the sharing and analysis of healthcare data by researchers, policy makers, and health professionals. For example, custom maps and tables can be made with the Community HealthView feature, while the Primary Care Atlas provides information about physician shortages.