Massachusetts Tracking Program

Website: https://matracking.ehs.state.ma.us/index.htmlExternal
Email: DPH-MA-EPHT@state.ma.us
Monthly newsletter subscription: subscribe-dph-ept-newsletter@listserv.state.ma.us

Mission:

The Massachusetts (MA) Tracking Program’s mission is to provide access to up-to-date health and environmental data and visualization tools for improved public health.

Quick Stats:

Massachusetts has 351 cities and towns, varying widely in population and demographic characteristics, each with their own unique history and “town meeting” governments. As such, public health is municipally organized, so local data are critical to public health planning. To meet stakeholder’s needs, MA Tracking makes data available at the city/town and census tract levels whenever possible.

 

Milestones:

Important events and achievements of the tracking program

Paul Revere statue in Massachusetts

  • Timelineicon
    2002

    Massachusetts Tracking Program established with CDC funding

  • Timelineicon
    2008

    Launched early version of the MA Tracking siteExternal with all required data

  • Timelineicon
    2014

    Enhanced MA Tracking site design for on-the-fly queries and interactive mapping

  • Timelineicon
    2016

    Developed community profileExternal

  • Timelineicon
    2017

    Released mobile-friendly MA Tracking siteExternal

Unique Data:

In addition to the set of standard data collected and displayed by all state and local tracking programs, individual programs may host data that are important to their populations. MA Tracking offers datasets owned by the Massachusetts Bureau of Environmental Health, many of which are available at the sub-county level. Unique datasets include the following.

Massachusetts is also a state with universal blood lead screening for children, resulting in one of the most comprehensive childhood lead databasesExternal in the country.

Maryland Environmental Public Health Tracking icon

Accomplishments:

MA Tracking engages stakeholders and regularly participates in broad-reaching projects that leverage the program’s data and technological infrastructure.

  • The Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs used MA Tracking data to update Environmental Justice (EJ) PolicyExternal, a resource for identifying at-risk “Vulnerable EJ Health Populations.”
  • A study on childhood blood lead and Superfund sites conducted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency utilized MA Tracking childhood lead poisoning data. Findings showed that Superfund cleanup activities result in a significant reduction in childhood blood lead levels.
  • MA Tracking provided the technological platform for the state health department’s new public data access and communication tool called Public Health Information Tool (PHIT). PHIT will provide data that can inform public health interventions targeting upstream social drivers of inequality, like neighborhood characteristics. PHIT will become available starting in December 2018.

Local Services:

MA Tracking offers resources for health professionals who serve residents.

  • Local data: Access local health data and Community ProfilesExternal with summaries of city/town-specific environmental health information
  • Training: Complete online trainingExternal on how to use MA environmental health tracking data; Email MA Tracking to ask about in person training events
  • Reports for physicians: View annual childhood lead screening progress reportsExternal for physicians that provide city/town-specific lead screening and exposure prevention information
Page last reviewed: December 7, 2018