News Flash

Danville, VA Local Government News and Announcements

Posted on: August 23, 2023

Health data published through dashboard

Data surrounding 32 measures and drivers of health for the City of Danville are now publicly available on a citywide and census tract level through the City Health Dashboard. This online database showcases dozens of health metrics and drivers on a granular level for just under 1,000 cities across the Country.

This dashboard will allow the Regional Engagement to Advance Community Health (REACH) Partnership – a group focused on systematically improving health drivers and outcomes in the Dan River Region – and other organizations to better assess the current health landscape for the City of Danville.

“We will use the data from the City Health Dashboard to help allocate resources and help improve health outcomes. We now have access to data for dozens of health factors and drivers of health on a census tract level across the City of Danville. This granular and filterable data will allow the REACH Partnership to track trends year over year, target where we need to focus our efforts, and aid in our commitment to improving community health through data integration, alignment of resources, and coordinated communication,” said Dr. Cassandra Shelton, REACH Program Manager.

CITY HEALTH DASHBOARD DATA

The City of Danville was one of 67 selected cities added to the City Health Dashboard as part of the 2023 Put Us On the Map Challenge. The City Health Dashboard shows how cities across the U.S. fare on over 35 health metrics and factors in five areas: Health Behaviors, Social and Economic Factors, Physical Environment, Health Outcomes and Clinical Care. These dashboards paint a clearer picture of community challenges on a neighborhood level, and the data is used in education settings worldwide. Data comes from federal, state and other datasets with rigorous standards for collection and analysis.

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The Health Dashboard allows for comparisons between specific census tracts within a city and between different cities. Chronic health conditions and social determinants of health are the primary data points that the REACH Partnership will monitor, paying particular attention to diabetes and heart disease – two areas where Danville’s percentages are high. For example, the dashboard shows that approximately 17 percent of adults in Danville reported having diabetes in 2020, whereas the average across all cities in the dashboard is 9.8 percent.

The City of Danville supported the REACH Partnership’s application to include Danville data in the City Health Dashboard.

City Manager Ken Larking said he was pleased to offer Danville’s support for this initiative. “It’s important for the future of our community and the people living here to have an opportunity to have a healthy lifestyle,” he said. “This dashboard will enable us to track progress over time and to target resources to the areas that need it the most. This effort, coupled with what the City of Danville is doing to improve neighborhoods, economic opportunity, and educational attainment will help Danville be the strong and resilient city we all desire.”

The REACH Partnership addresses systemic barriers to physical and mental health services for at-risk populations. The REACH Partnership works with a related public health AmeriCorps program and employs coordinated care teams to reduce avoidable emergency department and hospital use and address chronic disease and health factors. The REACH Partnership is managed by the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research and is supported by the Health Collaborative of the Dan River Region.

“The City Health Dashboard is an excellent tool that will continue to support and advance our collaborative work,” said Maggie Richardson, Regional Coordinator for the Health Collaborative. “Access to local data is so important for validating people’s lived experiences and developing effective strategies that directly address health inequities.“

The REACH Partnership also includes the Virginia Cooperative Extension, Piedmont Access to Community Health Services, Gateway Health, Sovah Health Danville, Compassion Healthcare, the Danville Life Saving Crew, Caswell County EMS, Danville-Pittsylvania Community Services and Danville Redevelopment and Housing Authority. The project is funded by a $6.3 million grant from the Danville Regional Foundation.

First launched in 2018, the City Health Dashboard was created by the New York University Grossman School of Medicine’s Department of Population Health with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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