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“How the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has used data reporting and visualization to develop its Disability and Health Data System (DHDS)”




Getting started



Meeting the need


“The tool was built with our partners in mind and this meant it had to be user-friendly, customisable and the data had to be easy to find,” says Brian. “We anticipated there would be users outside these groups who were lower-level users of statistical information. We also worked very hard with key users, particularly people with disabilities. That led us to develop high-contrast maps that were easier for users with visual impairments to see. We have also included easy-to-understand information about how to use the tool,” says Brian.

“We have had really good response. In particular, people have said that they are happy with the data that is available. This is the first time they have been able to access state–level disability data, so it is meeting a previously unmet need.”


Along with the positive feedback, some individuals have also made suggestions for additions that could be included. “Using InstantAtlas has positioned us well and we are seen as an innovator by other health programs. We have had a number of them ask us for demonstrations and help with developing their own data systems.”


Future development


The next big development for the team is to include profiles that will allow states to assess the health of people with disabilities across a number of indicators. This is important for those states looking to meet US public health goals and to monitor performance.
























Other benefits are:


  1. DHDS has taken data, presented it in an accessible format so that it can be used to improve health and wellness for people living with disabilities in the US.
  2. Data are now provided in a consistent and standardized format that enable accurate state-by-state comparisons
  3. The team has used data visualization to develop the first ever state level disability surveillance system














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