SCR Data Science
National Rural Health Day exists to promote awareness of the unique healthcare needs in rural areas of America. 60 million people, or 1 in every 5 Americans, currently live in rural areas of the United States. Receiving medical care is not always easy for those living in these areas due to a potential shortage of providers.
In Arkansas, 44% of the population live in rural (or non-metropolitan) areas. This means there’s roughly 9.5 physicians for every 10,000 people living in rural areas. In Louisiana, there are 9 physicians to every 10,000 rural residents. For the other three states:
- New Mexico: 12.5 physicians per 10,000 rural residents
- Texas: 8 physicians per 10,000 rural residents
- Oklahoma: 10.3 physicians per 10,000 rural residents
This contrasts from metropolitan areas in Texas, for instance, where the average is 25.7 physicians for every 10,000 people.
A few strategies being used to bring more healthcare into these areas include virtual doctor visits, incentives for doctors, and affiliation with larger healthcare networks. Rural Health Information Hub provides several resources for those interested in learning about public health in rural areas. Knowing about the resources around your area could possibly save a life in times of emergency.
The In Case You Missed It (ICYMI) Webinar Recap series will provide a summary of our monthly SCR CONNECTions webinars. We’ll go over highlights from our guest speakers’ presentations and give some additional thoughts about the connections our attendees could be making from the presented topics!
Our September guest speaker, Susana Privett, Data Dissemination Specialist with the US Census Bureau, is no stranger to online webinar presentations. A large part of her duties include giving online and in-person trainings and workshops on data and the census bureau’s online tools. And it’s a good thing, because September was one of our highest attended webinars yet!
For those not aware, all of the data collected from the US census, performed every 10 years, is posted online and available for access from census.gov. The website was recently revamped to be more user friendly and provide more opportunities for learning about census data, including additional training, news, infographics, and stories about data.
Susana demonstrated many of the features of the census website, such as QuickFacts to compare geographical data and American Factfinder, a data search tool that locates tables of population data. She also explained how census data is collected and categorized, with a breakdown of the geographic area types and an overview of census tracts and blocks. “They’re really like Russian nesting dolls,” she said, with a combination of legal and statistical geography.
Data and assessment are increasingly important topics in an era of big data and with the growth of digital data collection. Certainly anyone applying for grant funding knows the importance of data in showing evidence of need and potential for impact! The census bureau provides one possible source of data that can be utilized, and it’s freely available for anyone to use.
Susana just scratched the surface of what data the census bureau has to offer, and we hope to offer another session from her in the future for those looking to enhance their census data searching skills. Be on the lookout for that future session, and catch up with her webinar in the meantime:
Don’t forget to mark your calendars for our next SCR CONNECTions webinar, Game On! Motivate and Engage Your Staff with Gaming Strategies, scheduled for Wednesday, October 10th at 10am CT / 9am MT!