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How data analytics, GIS helps Dartmouth Atlas influence healthcare

Brian Eastwood | Feb. 4, 2014
The Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care has more than 100 TB of Medicare claims data. This information, combined with peer-reviewed medical research, informs healthcare policy and helps institutions compare their quality metrics. Like any good atlas, it also uses data-driven maps to prove its points.

This map of tonsillectomies performed in northern New England illustrates what happens when Medicaid claims data and mapping software come together. (Image via Dartmouth Atlas.)

Health Data Analysis Expands Beyond Medicare to Pediatrics, Surgery
While the foundation of the Dartmouth Atlas is raw claims data for the approximately 35 million Medicare beneficiaries in United States, the institute is increasingly gaining access to data sets for patients under 65, Goodman says.

The institute began receiving data on pediatric care in December 2013 and intends to examine "all domains of healthcare" for children, from medication to ER use to surgical procedures, Goodman says. Meanwhile, a project in its early stages aims to present "a unique perspective" on how surgery falls into treatment plans for conditions such as organ failure and joint replacement.

Both endeavors will maintain a geographic focus, Goodman says, since that remains such an important factor in the type of healthcare that an individual receives.


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