Informaticopia

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Mapping (for healthcare)

Kable - Mapping for healthcare - 8 November 2005

The Kablenet journal "Government Computing" in it's latest edition (Dec 2005) covered the announcement of agreement between the Ordnance Survey and the NHS via the Health and Social Care Information Centre, for the use of digital mapping in a pilot which will allow managers to use geographic information to help identify health inequalities, record changes to patient catchment areas, carry out epidemiological analysis and target services to clinical hotspots.

I have been thinking about the opportunities offered by geographic information systems in healthcare for a while but don't have the technical skills, or money for the licence agreement, to truely play with these sorts of systems.

The experts in this field recently (Dec 1-2 2005) gathered in Bangkok & the presentations etc will be available from the conference web site 1st International Symposium on Health GIS

What I have found and had a play with following Ben Toth's post on the NHS elibraries blog, is Wayfaring which uses google maps and satelite images enabling you to add local Waypoints and walks in a collaborative venture. I've done a quick demo using local pubs, churches etc and a few walks in the valley where I live "Chew Valley pubs and landmarks". It would be great if everyone signed up and put in local sights to where they live/work which can then be shared by everyone else. Perhaps adding local hospitals GPs surgeries, pharmacies etc.

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