Health Data Project Toolkit a Guide for CA Health Data Ambassadors

I. Getting Started as a Health Data Ambassador

Health & Open Data Education

Your main goal as an Ambassador is to paint a picture for both government officials and local communities that clearly shows how health data can inform policy discussions, raise public awareness of issues, and even directly improve people’s lives. Spreadsheets filled with immunizations rates and asthma rates on their own can’t solve California’s health problems. Your job is to tell the story about how newly available data can create products and tools tailored to your community’s local needs that have the potential to not only improve government health services, but also lead to the creation of healthier communities up and down the state. You should see yourself as an extension of the state, given that they can’t dig deep into particular community needs, regularly communicating community feedback to them.

Important Resources:

  1. Overview of the California Health Data project and process

  2. Your Job Description

  3. What is Open Data and examples of Local Open Data Policies?

  4. The importance of tying Open Data to an issue and service deliveryimprovement

  5. California Health and Human Services (CHHS) Open Data Portal & CHHS Open Data Handbook and best practices

  6. CHHS Datasets currently available

  7. CHHS Datasets existing and to be released

  8. Signing up for the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) open data mailing list

  9. Important Health Data Resources:

    a. Much of the Open Data movement started with Todd Park, former CTO of the United States, and the Federal Government’s health data efforts

    b. Open Data examples from the UK’s National Health Services MSRA Infection Rate Reduction acquired in hospitals such as staph infections or “superbugs”

    c. Wrangling data – some background

    d. Code for America (CfA) Open Data playbook

    e. Code for America Health Projects

    f. Open Source Projects from Code Montage

Other Helpful Resources and Health Data/Policy Research

  1. California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF) Case Studies: In Plain Sight - Cheryl Wold which provides an overview for experts and generalists, to understand what’s working nationally and how to leverage open data for healthier communities

  2. UCLA AskCHIS Neighborhood Edition, provides zip-code level data on important health indicators for individuals

  3. US Census Health Track Data