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Finding Health Statistics  

This guide provides resources for finding health statistics by type, location, population group, and health topic. Web resources for analyzing, querying, and understanding statistic sets are also made available.
Last Updated: Jan 24, 2014 URL: Print Guide Email Alerts

Getting Started Print Page

Recommended Background Reading

UAB-Only Web Resource


The good news:

  • The U.S. Government collects and makes freely available many valuable statistics and data sets.
  • Many public-use data files are available for purchase from the National Center for Health Statistics.
  • Some government sites offer tools for finding data.
  • States vary in the amount of data they provide, but national statistics often have a state, and sometimes a county and metropolitan area, component.


  • Be aware that data may not have been collected on your subject.

  • Data may not be available for very recent years. It takes time to collect, analyze data and publish it.

  • Local data continue to present challenges.

  • Although abundant data is freely available on the web from government or education sites, some data may not be free.

  • Private statistics organizations may charge for hard-to-find data collected through private surveys.

  • Consider the limitations of your data.

  • Data are only as reliable as the methods used to collect them and those who collected them. Therefore, some data may be of varying quality.

  • Certain methods of collecting data, such as telephone surveys, may have inherent limitations.



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Health Statistics Books Available at LHL

Cover Art
Health statistics: shaping policy and practice to improve the population's health - Friedman, Daniel J., Hunter, Edward L., Parrish, R. Gibson
Call Number: WA 950 H3492 2005
ISBN: 0195149289
Provides a comprehensive account of the essential concepts and complex underpinnings of health statistics.

Cover Art
World health statistics 2009 - World Health Organization
Call Number: WA 530.1 W893 2009
ISBN: 9789241563819
Contains WHO's annual compilation of data from its 193 Member States, and includes a summary of progress towards the health-related Millennium Development Goals and targets.


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