Published on Investing in Health

HealthStats Gets a Digital Facelift

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Over the last 30 years, how has the number of children women bear changed across countries? What percentage of births are attended by skilled health staff in Africa? What percentage of women receive prenatal care in Latin America?

These are among the questions researchers and policymakers can answer by visiting the World Bank’s revamped HealthStats website, launching today as part of the Bank’s continuing Open Data Initiative.

The site is the result of a months-long effort by the Bank’s Health, Nutrition and Population unit and the Development Data Group. We’re excited to bring you the 2.0 version, with several new features to increase information sharing and understanding of global health trends. These include:

1) animated data visualization that shows how indicators have changed over decades;

2) social sharing buttons to allow users to share data via Facebook, Twitter and e-mail; and

3) a new database on population estimates and projections, which allows users to download both historical and projected population data.


Health Stats provides access to more than 250 indicators on health, nutrition and population in 200+ countries, covering topics such as health financing, HIV/AIDS, immunization, health workforce and health facilities use, nutrition, reproductive health, cause of death, non-communicable diseases, and water and sanitation. Users can pull data by country, topic, or indicator, and view the resulting data (and wealth quintiles) in tables, charts or maps, or access pre-made tables for quick query.

The site draws on a variety of data sources, including administrative statistics and household surveys compiled by the World Bank Group and its client countries, the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), the Food and Agricultural Organization of United Nations (FAO), the United Nations Population Division, the United Nations Statistics Division, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

In tandem with the site launch, we’re also happy to announce the release of two new HealthStats mobile apps, for iOS and Android.

We hope to see many of our colleagues at the Bank, partners and clients worldwide make use of the site and tap into it on their mobile devices. If you’re the creative type, consider submitting your own health data visualizations to the Bank’s “Data Viz” Tumblr.

Please let us know what you think in comments below.


Samuel Mills

Senior Health Specialist, Health Nutrition & Population Global Practice at the World Bank Group

Emi Suzuki

Demographer, Development Data Group, World Bank

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