Below are several sources for publicly available data describing public health, socioeconomic, and demographic characteristics of small geographic areas. Many data are available at the level of counties or ZIP codes. While these data do not provide the full picture of a community vis-à-vis assessment, they provide an excellent starting point in identifying issues affecting particular communities. 

The page will consist of data sources and available metrics within the categories of 1) Substance Use, Associated Potential Infections, and Mental Health; 2) General Public Health; and 3) Demographic/Socioeconomic. Where metrics are available on separate pages, URLs for individual metrics are given.

To ensure this page is helpful to those of all skill levels with regards to data analysis, we have included many data sources with associated interactive maps or table creators, which allow for easier creation of graphics or other means of displaying data. These sources are listed below. They are also denoted as such in their expanded descriptions.

Sources with Interactive Maps or Other Graphic/Table Creation Tools:

  • AtlasPlus
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
  • Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS)
  • Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
  • Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS)
  • Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE)
  • Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE)
  • Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS)
  • Michigan System for Opioid Surveillance (MI-SOS)
  • Michigan Substance Use Disorder Data Repository (MI-SUDDR)

Substance Use, Associated Potential Infections, and Mental Health

A CDC-managed data platform providing data related to infectious diseases and social determinants of health.

  • HIV Incidence
  • Viral Heptatitis Incidence
  • Syphilis Incidence
  • Other Infectious Disease Incidence
  • Social Determinants of Health

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Michigan Automated Prescription System (MAPS)
Michigan's Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP), which captures outpatient prescriptions for various medications including opioids. Note that these data are significantly more difficult to analyze than others because their Drug Utilization Reports offer raw data (prescriptions by each individual drug specific to dosage). However, Atlas Health has analyzed years 2013 to 2015 of this data to produce a State Opioid Assessment which may be useful. Many other states have PDMPs with publicly available data if this is of interest to organizations with a multi-state presence.

  • Opioid prescriptions by prescriber county
  • Opioid prescriptions by patient county
  • Other medication prescribing data

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Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS)
MDHHS has several data resources available directly on its website. It provides a spreadsheet and associated map of pharmacies offering over-the-counter naloxone following the introduction of the standing order in May of 2017. It also provides annual reports describing the prevalence of viral hepatitis B and C as well as the state of substance use disorders, which contain related data at the county level.

  • Pharmacies offering naloxone
  • Acute/Chronic Hepatitis B/C Rates
  • Heroin Overdose Rates
  • Treatment Admissions Rates

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Michigan System for Opioid Surveillance (MI-SOS)
MI-SOS/SOS is a project created by the University of Michigan Injury Center which tracks near-real-time data on both fatal and nonfatal overdose using the measures of suspected drug deaths and naloxone administrations, respectively. These data are preliminary and potentially inaccurate in comparison to more thorough data from death certificate data, which is published with approximately a year of lag. You must request access to MI-SOS, but this is a simple process possible at the link below.

  • Suspected Drug Deaths (Fatal Overdose)
  • EMS Naloxone Administrations (Nonfatal Overdose)

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Michigan Substance Use Disorder Data Repository (MI-SUDDR)
MDHHS compiles data from several sources using its repository MI-SUDDR, including overdose data, data from the Michigan Profile for Healthy Youth (MiPHY) survey, and data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). The data compiled by MI-SUDDR is typically easier to use than that available directly from each source, so this is an excellent starting point for those with limited knowledge of data manipulation or analysis.

  • Mental health
  • Substance use in general and in youth
  • Overdose rates
  • Other substance use-related data

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National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH)
NSDUH provides nationally representative data regarding substance use, perceptions of use, and general mental health. It also has both state-level and substate-level data available for certain data. As mentioned in the description of MI-SUDDR, these data are also available through that repository and are generally easier to retrieve there.

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Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Because of its oversight regarding Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder, SAMHSA provides excellent data regarding MAT providers available nationwide. It has listings for Opioid Treatment Programs (OTPs), which take place in a clinic setting and can prescribe methadone for MAT, providing doses on-site, and Office-Based Outpatient Treatment programs (OBOTs), which are operated out of the office of a clinician and prescribe buprenorphine or naltrexone with no requirements for location of doses taken.

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General Public Health

Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS)
A CDC-managed survey capturing risk factors for various health conditions, such as alcohol use, physical activity, and general mental health.

  • Health-related risk behaviors (e.g., alcohol, tobacco, and other substance use)
  • Mental health
  • Chronic health conditions

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Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS)
The CDC's youth equivalent to the BRFSS which captures nationally-representative information from high school students, grades 9 through 12.

  • Health-related risk behaviors (e.g., alcohol, tobacco, and other substance use)
  • Dietary behaviors
  • Physical activity
  • Sexual activity

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Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
An excellent source of economic data, particularly unemployment and other labor force statistics. Because the BLS Data Finder can be challenging to use, we have listed the links to county-level monthly unemployment for Michigan counties.

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Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE)
A US Census-managed dataset for insured/uninsured rates.

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Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE)
A US Census-managed dataset for general and child poverty rates as well as median household incomes.

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About AmeriCorps

AmeriCorps VISTA is a national service program, administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), through which members serve with nonprofit, faith-based, and public agencies for one full year on projects designed to lessen and alleviate poverty.