Background: Open public health data consists of organized online data repositories assembled during or after public health investigations. There are enormous quantities of organized public health repository data emerging in a variety of academic, government, or non-commercial discipline or subject repositories. A new registry of research data repositories, re3data.org, has the potential to improve the identification, access, and reuse of public health data, as well as promote best practices of data preservation and management. The intention of this investigation is to provide an introduction to effective use re3data.org for access to shared open public health data.
Description: The authors examined epidemiology, public health, health services, and social medicine data repositories tagged for public health subjects in re3data.org (n=124) for country of origin, sponsorship, features, data access, and description. Re3data.org provides searching of keywords and browsing of subject tags, and these are tags, and most repositories have multiple subject tags. A visual or linear text browse is available for users. For unclear reasons, the top level re3data.org subject browsing categories separated epidemiology from the main public health browsing category. The observations of the identified public health repositories were recorded with a shared Google Sheet, in order to facilitate and conduct observations of patterns and comparisons
Result: The authors have created original charts and tables as educational elements, as well as provide visual instruction for how to search re3data.org for public health data repositories. re3data.org currently indexes over 2000 repositories, representing all subjects. In the combined categories public health, health services research, social medicine and epidemiology, medical biometry, and medical informatics, at last count, there are 167 listed repositories.
Conclusion: Availability and sharing of research data can model disease transmission, track health outcomes and assist the allocation of funds for all aspects of public health. The re3data.org registry of data repositories provides visibility for existing and emerging open datasets available for reproducing existing research or provoking new hypotheses.
Greenberg CJ, Narang S. Open public health data discovery: Start with re3data.org [Poster 66]. Poster presented at: Vision: The future in focus. MLA 2020 Annual Meeting; 2020 July 27 – Aug 14; Portland, OR.
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