Welcome to the Iowa Public Health Tracking Portal, a centralized source for public health data in Iowa. The goal of this portal is to provide information to help improve where we live, work, and play.
The Iowa Public Health Tracking Portal includes data from a variety of sources, and generally falls into the following categories:
- Health effect data: Data about health conditions and diseases, such as asthma and birth defects.
- Environmental hazard data: Data about chemicals or other substances such as carbon monoxide and air pollution in the environment.
- Exposure data: Data about the amount of a chemical in a person's body, such as lead in blood.
- Other data: Data that helps us learn about relationships between social, biological, and environmental factors and health effects. For example, information about age, sex, race, and behavior or lifestyle choices may help us understand the prevalence of health issues in a population.
In an effort to make the portal data usable and understandable, the portal includes background information and descriptive details for each of the topic areas. Much of the data on the portal are presented as Nationally Consistent Data Measures (NCDMs). Using NCDMs to report data make it possible to compare rates between counties, and other states in the CDC Environmental Public Health Tracking Network.
The portal includes the most recent complete year of data available from the agency or program that originally collected the data. Some data sets take longer to collect and verify which means that the most recent year available may be from 2-3 years ago. Data are generally updated once a year.
The privacy of individuals' health data is protected by law. When the number of cases of a health condition is small and/or the total number of people from which the case(s) come is small, those particular data cannot be made public since it could be possible to trace the data back to individuals. Since the risk for a breach of confidentiality is higher when reporting small numbers, these values are suppressed on the portal and presented using an asterisk (*). Counts of five or fewer are suppressed on the portal. Additional information can be found in the Iowa HHS Disclosure of Confidential Public Health Information, Records, or Data Policy.
Watch videos to learn how to use the data visualizations and reports available on the Public Health Tracking Portal.
Communicating Data Trainings
The Communicating Data training series is designed to help public health professionals build their skills, knowledge, and confidence when it comes to interpreting and communicating data.