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Periodically, the Research and Evaluation Offices creates "Data Briefs" addressing timely and significant public health topics. This section includes links to those.

Demographic Characteristics and Social Determinants of Health Among Boston's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Adult Residents, 2010 – 2017 (Published August, 2019)

Boston is a diverse city that has seen the make-up of its population change over the centuries. The demographics and health outcomes, including upstream factors influencing them such as housing/food security, education and income, of different ethnic and racial populations in Boston has been explored greatly. However, the demographics of Boston's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) adult residents has been less explored compared to others.  In a new data brief, Demographic Characteristics and Social Determinants of Health Among Boston's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Adult Residents, 2010 – 2017, researchers describe not only the demographics of the LGBT population in Boston, but also begin to explore these residents' experiences with social determinants of health (SDoH) and how those factors influence health and well-being. 

Racial Differences in Accessing Substance Abuse Disorder Treatment Following an Opioid Overdose (Published March 2019)

Following its Public Health Council meeting, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) released a data brief summarizing results of a study conducted by the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) addressing health equity issues in the current opioid epidemic. Specifically, the research team found that Black residents who were treated at local hospitals for opioid overdose were significantly less likely to have accessed state-funded substance use disorder treatment services than their White counterparts following discharge. According to the brief, the odds of receiving subsequent substance use disorder treatment within 30 days following a hospital patient encounter for opioid overdose were 24% and 22% lower, respectively, for Black and Hispanic residents throughout Massachusetts in comparison to their White counterparts; these differences were statistically significant (p<0.05). Among Boston residents, the odds of receiving subsequent treatment within 30 days following a HPE for OOD was 49% lower for Black residents and 31% lower for Hispanic residents in comparison with White residents adjusting for other important risk factors, and this difference was statistically significant.


Healthcare Access Report

In March 2017, the Boston Public Health Commission engaged in a collaborative process to assess availability of healthcare services in the city of Boston across three strategies: reviewing preliminary data, convening healthcare system stakeholders, and surveying vulnerable populations.  This included a process to identify un-served or under-served populations through a combination of data review and surveying representatives from Boston’s healthcare system at the Healthcare Access Convening. BPHC also surveyed clients from the identified vulnerable populations to further understand the barriers to care they experience in Boston. The Healthcare Access Report summarizes these findings. ​.

Health of Boston's Children Report
The Health of Boston’s Children: Parent and Caregiver perspectives is the product of a partnership between BPHC and Boston Children’s Hospital to survey 2,100 parents and caregivers about a variety of health-related issues for children from birth to age seventeen. The study examines the demographics of Boston’s children and families, child health and health services, their home and school life, engagement with community resources, special health care needs, and parent and caregiver experiences raising children in Boston.

The report is based on the Boston Survey of Children’s Health, a phone survey conducted in 2012. Because the survey was modeled on the National Survey of Children’s Health, findings allow researchers to compare health outcomes and experiences of Boston’s children and families with those of children and families across Massachusetts and the United States.

The reported is intended to encourage public dialogue, inform policymakers, and stimulate programs, services and research aimed at eliminating inequities and improving health outcomes for children. It is the first of three reports that will, together, comprise the Boston Child Health Study.

Infant Mortality Report
After more than a decade of concerted effort to improve the health of Black women and their children, the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) released a data brief showing significant improvement in the Black Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) and a historic narrowing of the IMR gap between Black infants and White infants.
Substance Abuse Reports​
Substance Abuse in Boston reports provide a broad picture of alcohol and drug misuse and abuse among Boston residents. The reports focus on data from select sources including surveys, substance abuse mortality, hospital admissions, emergency department visits, and treatment admissions in an effort to describe patterns and trends of specific substance abuse-related health experiences among Boston residents. 
Infectious Disease Bureau

The Infectious Disease Bureau regularly releases reports on the statistics, trends, and overall epidemiology of communicable diseases. You can access these reports below, organized by disease. Check back frequently for the most up-to-date data.

Emergency Shelter Commission​: Annual Homeless Census
The Emergency Shelter Commission coordinates the annual city of Boston Homeless Count each December - a one-night point in-time census of homeless persons living on the streets, in emergency shelters for individuals or families, in domestic violence programs, in residential mental health or substance abuse programs, in transitional housing and in specialized programs serving homeless youth and homeless Veterans. The Homeless Count in Boston provides critical information on the scope of the problem of homelessness in our community. Review past reports here. 
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