Nova Scotia Health Atlas: Putting health research and planning on the map

December 20, 2016 – Halifax, Nova Scotia

The Maritime SPOR SUPPORT Unit (MSSU) announced today the launch of the community cluster health planning geographies in partnership with the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA), and Dr. Peter Vaughan, Deputy Minister of the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness. These clusters are a critical component of the larger Nova Scotia Health Atlas project.

“Nova Scotians have different health needs, depending on where they live, their age, income and marital status, among other things,” said Dr. Peter Vaughan, Deputy Minister, Health and Wellness. “The Nova Scotia Health Atlas will help give health care leaders and government the data we need to make smart decisions, targeted to the specific health needs of communities.”

The Nova Scotia Health Atlas is an interactive, web-based mapping tool that will provide timely information pertaining to the distribution of health-related indicators across different geographic areas of Nova Scotia. “The Health Atlas is a prime example of how health researchers, planners and decision-makers are working symbiotically to improve the health of Nova Scotians and all of the Maritimes,” said Dr. Adrian Levy, Nominated Principal Investigator of the MSSU.

The availability of this information from a single location in a user-friendly format, through the Atlas, will better enable Nova Scotia’s health care stakeholders to understand and respond to the health care challenges facing the province. According to Dr. Levy, “with the launch of the Health Atlas, Nova Scotia will join other Canadian provinces and health authorities at the forefront of evidence-informed health care planning.”                             

Going forward, the Health Atlas will continue to receive oversight and guidance from a diverse advisory panel, including provincial government representatives, NSHA Health Centre administrators, and patient advisors, as well as input on its content and priorities, as identified by decision makers and the public.