LDH’s Environmental Public Health Monitoring Program works with its partners to create tools to improve the health of Louisiana communities

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The Louisiana Department of Health Environmental public health monitoring program, or Tracking, is committed to providing all citizens of Louisiana with better health data. For the past 10 years, the monitoring team has partnered with LDH’s Health Informatics Office and other partners to develop, launch and improve the department Health data portal
(Explore data). Data Explorer is a web-based tool that makes environmental, health, population and exposure data and information accessible to municipalities, university students and researchers, community-based organizations, policy makers and other end users. Data and information from the online data and mapping tool can be used to support funding, policies, programs and other public health actions to improve community health.

Funding from
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
made the monitoring program possible. Since the program began in 2009, staff have worked with their federal, state and local partners to collect and evaluate data on important environmental health issues affecting Louisiana communities. Over the past six years, more than 25 organizations have requested data and information from the LDH Tracking team to inform local and state decision makers and community members, to identify and address local public health issues, and to support funding to understand the connections between the environment and health.

Recently, LDH Tracking and its partners updated the Department’s Data Explorer, which included many datasets and updates, a major achievement following the agency’s response to COVID-19 2020-21. The tool now includes childhood blood lead data, sub-parochial cancer data, and more up-to-date occupational health data. As climate change is a concern in Louisiana, the team also added new data on temperature, drought and rainfall to the Data Explorer. Stay tuned – more site updates and improvements are on the way!

This summer, LDH’s monitoring team will work with the CDC and its partners to celebrate Monitoring Awareness Week. The theme of this year’s event, which will take place from 12 to 16 July, is “Powered by Tracking”. Since monitoring is more than a data warehouse, staff will highlight program successes beyond hosted data on the department data explorer Facebook Other Twitter channels.

The program would like to wish everyone a good monitoring awareness week. LDH Tracking has been successful thanks to its hardworking and dedicated staff and loyal partners. The monitoring team wants to involve other partners in the program. LDH Tracking Email a [email protected] to learn more about the program and to discuss collaboration with the team.

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