Health Department Launches a Web Portal to Track the City’s Environmental Health Conditions
December 8, 2009 – Any New Yorker can now monitor the city’s environmental conditions and certain health conditions, with a few clicks of the mouse. The Health Department’s new Environmental Public Health Tracking Portal – available at http://nyc.gov/health/tracking – provides continually updated information on everything from air quality and housing quality to pest levels and pesticide use. The effort was funded by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
“Until now, it has been hard to compare environmental health conditions across the city’s many neighborhoods,” said Daniel Kass, the Health Department’s acting deputy commissioner for environmental health. “Now anyone can track issues of concern – for a neighborhood, a borough or the whole of New York City.”
The portal offers various ways to explore environmental health data. Users can, for example, see pesticide use by neighborhood, or view how closely related childhood asthma hospitalizations are with exposure to second-hand cigarette smoke in the home. The portal can also highlight citywide trends, such as the number of days on which air-quality advisories have been issued for general or special populations.
Here are some of the tasks the portal makes possible:
• Mapping environmental health indicators by neighborhood
• Plotting associations between selected indicators
• Creating custom data tables
• Charting trends over time
• Exploring environmental health differences by average neighborhood income
• Creating neighborhood-at-a-glance summary reports
• Exploring associations between environmental health indicators and individual characteristics, such as age or sex
For more information about the Environmental Public Health Tracking Portal, visit http://nyc.gov/health/tracking.