Dartmouth Atlas Project

A Progress Report

This report describes the recent work of the Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care, which was first published in 1996 by John E. Wennberg, MD, MPH, and a team of researchers at Dartmouth Medical School.

The atlas analyzes Medicare claims data for hospital and outpatient care to provide information about the distribution and use of health care resources in 306 hospital referral regions (regional market areas for tertiary medical care) and 3,436 hospital service areas (local health care markets) nationwide.

By offering comprehensive data for continuous comparative information on spending, resource inputs, utilization and outcomes, the atlas gives those who use, provide, pay for and make policy about America's health care system the opportunity to compare the effectiveness and efficiency of states, regions, individual hospitals and associated physicians in treating chronically ill patients.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has supported the Dartmouth Atlas Project since 1994.