Using geographic information systems to match local health needs with public health services and programs

Am J Public Health. 2011 Sep;101(9):1664-5. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2011.300195. Epub 2011 Jul 21.


Local health departments (LHDs) play an important role in ensuring essential public health services. Geographic information system (GIS) technology offers a promising means for LHDs to identify geographic gaps between areas of need and the reach of public health services. We examined how large LHDs could better inform planning and investments by using GIS-based methodologies to align community needs and health outcomes with public health programs. We present a framework to drive LHDs in identifying and addressing gaps or mismatches in services or health outcomes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Community Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Geographic Information Systems*
  • Health Services Needs and Demand / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Public Health Practice*