Wednesday, 7 February 2007

Count 'em!

Statistics - the world is full of them. Everybody these days, government in particular it seems, has a mania for figures. We're obsessive about counting everything. Arguably there is much in life that has great value but cannot be quantified and counted. However - that's another subject. Today I just want to suggest some places to go for numbers when you need them.

National Statistics. The official UK government site for statistics. The site has illness related figures and also lots of data on health behaviour and lifestyle. Much of the data is available in Excel spreadsheet format.

Clinical and Health Outcomes Knowledge Base. The official NHS site for all the NHS "indicators". Topics covered include admissions, deaths, cancer incidence, oral heath, BMI and abortions. Available as Excel spreadsheets.

Department of Health. Includes hospital episode statistics, health and personal social services statistics and departmental statistical publications.

Nation Master. This has a range of health stats, the difference being it covers the world. So if you want to compare numbers of beds per 1000 population in Japan with those in the Czech republic, or motor vehicle deaths in Austria with those in Australia, this is the site for you. Data is presented in graph form, as pie charts and maps.

Don't forget to check health portals like BUBL and Intute. Finally, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has figures on work-related illness.

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