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New online tool helps you measure the health of your neighborhood

Colorado city
Posted at 5:50 AM, Feb 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-08 07:50:44-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — Where you live can affect your health. and now there's a new way to measure the health of your community.

It's a new CDC data tool called "Places." This tool gives its users is an online, hyper-local look at health factors across the country. The online interactive map tracks 27 chronic disease factors, like heart disease, diabetes and health insurance. All you have to do is type in your Southern Colorado zip code, and you can compare the prevalence of diseases in your location, to other neighborhoods, or the country as a whole.

In an interview with Newsy, a CDC official explains how healthy and unhealthy neighborhoods can exist right next to each other.

"The variation is just sometimes so extreme, you can have literally communities that are adjacent to one another where the rates of heart disease range for something like 1.5 percent to 36 percent, and we're talking in some cases blocks away from each other," explained Karen Hacker, the Director of the CDC's National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health promotion.

Places doesn't currently include race and ethnicity data sets, but experts say this is just another tool in the arsenal to help address health disparities, and it's available now.