Indiana FSSA Introduces the Hoosier Atlas for Well being and Wellbeing
The wellbeing atlas will provide information on disparity data in all districts.
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration today announced the launch of a new statewide, interactive map showing the spread of unmet social needs across the state from community to community. With the data, communities can identify and prioritize emerging social needs and use targeted services to proactively and strategically address these needs.
The information is just one example of how governments can respond to Governor Eric J. Holcomb’s call on Tuesday, August 18, to shape changes around equity and inclusion. The wellbeing atlas will provide information on disparity data in all districts.
“This type of data, including age, racial and educational demographics, will help us uncover the differences our populations face in accessing services, providing care for their families, finding medical care, searching and Maintaining a job and living a safe and healthy life are required, “said Governor Holcomb.
The Hoosier Atlas for Health and Wellbeing highlights two years of data that Hoosiers has voluntarily provided when applying for government health insurance programs, food aid or emergency cash assistance. The website was launched today at www.FSSA.in.gov.
“With information representing nearly 300,000 households, the Hoosier Atlas for Health and Wellbeing provides a dynamic overview of the various challenges facing our communities and citizens,” said Jennifer Sullivan, MD, MPH, FSSA secretary. “We are using this tool across the state to ensure our programs meet the real needs of Hoosiers and to help nonprofits use their resources to address the most pressing issues locally.”
In 2018, the FSSA added 10 optional survey questions to online applications for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Temporary Aid for Families in Need, and Health Insurance. The aim was to collect information about the experiences of applicants and customers in order to be able to serve them better.
“This ability to study demographic information enables the FSSA and others to work with local communities to work towards more equitable access to services and improved health outcomes among marginalized populations,” added Dr. Sullivan added. “With a more solid understanding of racial and ethnic differences, we will be better able to design, implement, and evaluate policies and programs aimed at addressing these ongoing injustices across Indiana.”
While the FSSA requires applicants to complete the survey questions, they are optional and will not affect the determination of eligibility. Approximately one in five applicants has completed the survey since it was launched.
The 10 questions are as follows:
- In the past 12 months, have you ever eaten less than you expected because you didn’t have enough money to eat?
- In the past 12 months, has your utility stopped working because you didn’t pay your bills?
- Are you concerned that you may not have stable housing for the next 2 months?
- Are childcare problems making it difficult for you to work or study? (leave blank if you have no children)
- Have you had to see a doctor in the past 12 months, but could not do so due to cost reasons?
- In the past 12 months, have you ever had to go without medical care because you had no way to get there?
- Ever need help reading hospital materials?
- Are you afraid of getting injured in your home or home?
- Have you been actively looking for work in the past 4 weeks?
- In the past 12 months, apart from household activities or work, have you participated in moderate exercise (fast walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, or weight lifting) at least three times a week?
Further information on how to conduct the survey:
- This survey was made available to people who have applied online ONLY and does not represent anyone who has applied in person, over the phone, via mail, or otherwise. In 2019, 80% of those who applied for SNAP, TANF, or health insurance applied online.
- Applications are made at household level and can represent more than one person. The application process identifies a primary contact person for the household and that person’s personal information is displayed in the public dashboard. For example, that person’s gender, race, and level of education.
- A person who completes more than one application and survey in a given period of time will be represented once. The survey responses and demographic details are based on each applicant’s most recent responses. For example, an applicant’s age, educational level, and survey responses can change over time, and reporting will reflect such changes.
- All information is presented in an aggregated form to ensure that personal data is protected. To protect people’s privacy, data representing 20 or fewer people in a county is not shown.