Conduent Healthy Communities Institute

CDC's 500 Cities Project

Conduent HCI sites that include any of the 500 largest cities in the United States (see the list here) will now have access to 28 indicators from the 500 Cities Project at the census place and census tract level.

If you believe you should have this data on your site, but you're not seeing it, contact your Account Manager.


  • The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the CDC Foundation launched the 500 Cities Project in partnership with the CDC.
  • This project will identify, analyze, and report city and census tract-level data, obtained using small area estimation methods, for 28 chronic disease measures for the 497 largest cities in America, plus the largest cities in Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
  • This project represents a first-of-its-kind data analysis to release information on a large scale for cities and for small areas within cities (census tracts).
  • The data from this project complements existing surveillance data necessary, as a method to more fully understand the health issues affecting the residents of a city or census tract.


  • The cities are labeled as "Census Place (City)" within your HCI platform
  • If you have Census tracts mapped for the 500 Cities; indicator data mapped includes any census tract that falls within the city. Even if other portions of the census tract fall outside the city, you will see the entire census tract mapped and shaded in.
  • The number of cities per state ranges from 1 to 121 (California)
  • The cities range in population from 42,417 in Burlington, Vermont to 8,175,133 in New York City, New York.
  • Within these 500 cities, there are approximately 28,000 census tracts, for which data will be provided.
    • The tracts range in population from less than 50 to 28,960, and in size from less than 1 square mile to more than 642 square miles. The number of tracts per city ranges from 8 to 2,140.
  • The project includes a total population of 103,020,808, which represents 33.4% of the total United States population of 308,745,538.




  • Detailed methodology for the project
  • The method of generating small area estimates (SAE) of the measures is a multi-level statistical modeling framework.
    • Specifically, an innovative peer-reviewed multilevel regression and poststratification (MRP) approach that links geocoded health surveys and high spatial resolution population demographic and socioeconomic data.
    • This accounts for the associations between individual health outcomes, individual characteristics, and spatial contexts and factors at multiple levels (e.g., state, county); predicts individual disease risk and health behaviors in a multi-level modeling framework, and estimates the geographic distributions of population disease burden and health behaviors.
  • Internal and external validation studies confirm the strong consistency between MRP model-based SAEs and direct BRFSS survey estimates at both state and county levels.

Sources of Data

  • The primary data sources for this project are the CDC Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, the Census 2010 population, and the American Community Survey estimates.

Data Utilization

  • Small area estimates from the 500 Cities Project can be used to:
    • Identify the health issues facing a city or neighborhoods within cities
    • Identify emerging health problems
    • Establish key health objectives
    • Develop and implement effective and targeted prevention activities


  • Indicators HCI will maintain for the 500 cities project are listed below - brand new indicators are marked with an (*)
    • Men 65+ who Received Recommended Preventive Services* - 2014
    • Women 65+ who Received Recommended Preventive Services* - 2014
    • Adults 65+ with Total Tooth Loss - 2014 
    • Adults who are Obese - 2014 
    • Adults who are Sedentary - 2014 
    • Adults who Binge Drink - 2014 
    • Adults who Experienced a Stroke - 2014 
    • Adults who Experienced Coronary Heart Disease - 2014 
    • Adults who have had a Routine Checkup: Past Year - 2014 
    • Adults who Have Taken Medications for High Blood Pressure* - 2013 
    • Adults who Smoke - 2014 
    • Adults who Visited a Dentist - 2014 
    • Adults with Arthritis - 2014 
    • Adults with Cancer* - 2014
    • Adults with COPD - 2014 
    • Adults with Current Asthma* - 2014
    • Adults with Diabetes - 2014 
    • Adults with Kidney Disease - 2014 
    • Adults without Health Insurance - 2014 
    • Cholesterol Test History: 5 Years - 2013 
    • Colon Cancer Screening: Sigmoidoscopy Past 5 Years and FOBT Past 3 Years, Colonoscopy Past 10 Years, or FOBT Past Year - 2014 
    • High Blood Pressure Prevalence - 2013 
    • High Cholesterol Prevalence: Adults 18+* - 2014
    • Insufficient Sleep - 2014 
    • Mammogram: 50-74 Past 2 Years - 2014 
    • Pap Test: Past 3 Years 21-65 - 2014 
    • Poor Mental Health Days: 14+ Days - 2014 
    • Poor Physical Health Days: 14+ Days - 2014

Possible Comparisons

  • Compare to US Value
  • Compare to distribution of the 500 largest cities in the United States
  • Compare to US Census tract distribution

For More Information

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