New NC data dashboard tracks violent deaths, not COVID
The COVID-19 pandemic has led the state of North Carolina to focus on disseminating disease information to the public through a daily, easy-to-understand, “dashboard” style presentation of new data.
Now, the state uses the same kind of tool to provide constantly updated information on violent deaths.
On Monday, November 1, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) introduced the infamously new “North Carolina Violent Death Reporting System Data Dashboard,” which will also be known under the name of âNC-VDRS Dashboardâ.
It is an interactive online dashboard that provides detailed and summary information on violent deaths for all 100 counties in the state. The dashboard, which is funded with money from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was created to “make data more accessible to public health partners to inform development, implementation and the evaluation of prevention efforts around violence and security â.
The database with the dashboard interface will be a population-based public health reporting system that will reveal “anonymized information on deaths resulting from violence, including homicides, suicides and unintentional deaths. by firearm “.
The information included will be gathered from three main sources: law enforcement records, death certificates and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.
Taken together, this information should help the public understand âwho, when, where and howâ and also âwhyâ these deaths are occurring.
NC Deputy Chief Health Secretary Kody H. Kinsley said the new tool should help communities address issues that lead to violent deaths.
âNCDHHS is committed to being transparent and continually improving our data systems to give North Carolina residents insight into key public health measures,â Kinsley said. “This information enables coordination among state, local, private and public partners to improve the health and well-being of the whole person of our state’s residents.”
The new dashboard includes statistics on all violent deaths, suicides, homicides and gun-related deaths from 2004 to 2019.
According to state health officials, violent actions claim the lives of more than five state residents every day. In 2019 – the most recent year for which full data is available – 2,184 North Carolina residents died from violence.
Of these deaths, 1,356 were suicides and 716 were homicides.
Gun death is the most common type of violent death in North Carolina. Then comes hanging, strangling and suffocation.