The government recently published a dementia atlas which revealed areas in which NHS care for dementia patients is considered good and areas where it was deemed worse. The graphic provided information as to which regions were meeting the national standards that were required. This includes things such as offering regular support and reviews.
The dementia atlas was created based on benchmarks being used for the following five themes of care: prevention, diagnosis, support, living with dementia and end of life care. These benchmarks were then compared with the figures provided by each region to produce a score, which was then colour coded.
One example of the type of care a dementia patient should be given is the matter of having an annual check up to review and refine their care requirements. The dementia atlas showed that in areas such as North East Lincolnshire and Aylesbury, approximately 85% of dementia patients received these face to face meetings. Unfortunately in other areas such as Somerset, this figure was as low as 50% which highlights the wide gap in the level of treatment patients receive.
Health secretary Jeremy hunt had this to say about the publishing of current levels of care “We are shining a spotlight on areas where there is still work to be done, whilst highlighting where we can learn from best practise”.
When conducting research comparing several locations and the measure of which they are doing something, developing an interactive map can prove to be a great tool, as highlighted by the dementia atlas.
DCC’s experience with interactive maps for analysis
In the past DCC has been able to develop an interactive dashboard with the inclusion of a Google Map plug in where by researchers were able to understand how much data was collected in particular areas and where more research was required. More information about this study can be found here: http://www.documentcapture.co.uk/2013/09/awareness-raising-case-study-stroke-association/
By comparing data from different sites, researchers are able to more effectively allocate their resources to regions where more campaigning or funding is possibly needed. Although it would be possible to create a static graph indicating which regions may be better or worse in a particular measure, the amount of time spent separating the data can prove time consuming. By utilising a dashboard, the user simply has to click on a region to display all the relevant results in that area, in addition, side by side comparison could also be possible.
In the event that you may be developing some sort of research involving several locations and wish improve the way in which you compare data, DCC will be happy to facilitate this requirement and understand what data specifically you are seeking. Feel free to get in touch using the contact tab above.
Original source BBC News Health