Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

This is an archive of thoughts I had about indicators and the community indicators movement. Some of the thinking is outdated, and many of the links may have broken over time.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative

Many of you are probably already familiar with CAHMI, the Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative. They've got a new website,, and just sent out their Fall 2007 newsletter.

Of particular interest to those of us working with community indicators are the new features at their Data Resource Center. Here's an excerpt from the fall newsletter to bring you up to date with what's happening.

The CAHMI Data Resource Center for Child and Adolescent Health ( ) supports the easy and effective use of data from the National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs (NS-CSHCN) and the National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH). The user-friendly Data Resource Center (DRC) website provides direct access to national, state and regional data results from the NS-CSHCN and NSCH. Technical assistance on using data from these surveys is always available by phone or email from DRC staff. Other website resources include educational materials about the surveys and examples of how others are using the data to inform, stimulate and track improvements in child health, health care and community-based services. The DRC is supported through a cooperative agreement from the federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau.

The data from the much anticipated 2005/2006 National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs are undergoing the final stages of clearance for public release. It is expected that the formal release of the national, state and regional results on the Data Resource Center for Child and Adolescent Health website will be early December.

To receive notification of the public release of the 2005/2006 NS-CSHCN. Go to: and enter your email address in the box provided.

The launch of the new 2005/2006 NS-CSHCN data on the DRC will be accompanied by tools and resources to assist in interpretation and comparability of these data with the 2001 NS-CSHCN. The DRC team will be available to provide technical assistance and answer questions about the new data.

The DRC seeks to continually improve easy access to national and state data on child health and health care services. Several new features are in place to help users get the data and information they need:

The NEW Customizable Profiles feature lets users select numerous indicators at a time to create their own state profile. These reports can be downloaded in a ready-to-present format. This feature complements the "all states comparison" feature (compare all states on one indicator) and the interactive query tool that allows users to make multiple, iterative comparisons on indicators across two geographic areas and by population subgroups.

Resource information improvements include the addition of "Pop out" menus that allow resource information to be accessed from any page in the data query as well as a new and improved Glossary, Search tool and Frequently Asked Questions.

Tell us what you think about our new updates and share ideas for future enhancements by emailing us at .


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