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Frequently Asked Questions

What data sets are available in the HRSA Data Warehouse (HDW)?

A detailed listing of the data available in the HDW and how the data can be accessed is available on the Data Sources page. Also, the Data Refresh page displays the most recent refresh dates and the frequency of data refreshes.


Where can I see a summary of HRSA’s activities data?

A. Please see the HRSA at a Glance topic page.


My organization’s contact information is incorrect in the grant data. How can this be fixed?

The source system for grantee contact information is the Electronic Handbooks. See grants.hrsa.gov for information on changing contact information in the EHBs.


When applying filters to Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) data, why do I get fewer results filtering by county and state than when I use the two-letter state abbreviation through the map tool or data portal?

Using the tool to filter by city and state will return only “Point” type (i.e. facility) HPSAs because this type of HPSA contains city and state information. Using the state abbreviation will return all HPSAs, a much larger group, but which have no city identifier included.


Why do clinician and grantee counts differ between geographic areas?

Clinicians and grantees may serve or operate in multiple locations with funds from a single grant or award. These locations may be in different HHS regions, states, counties, or congressional districts. Because of this, the counts of clinicians and grantees may not add up across all geographic reporting areas.


How are shortage area counts calculated?

The geographic boundaries of shortage areas, including HPSAs and Medically Underserved Areas/Populations (MUA/P), may cross the geographic boundaries of a HHS region, state, county, or congressional district. As a result, a shortage area may be counted in more than one geographic area. Alternately, some shortage areas cannot be geocoded to an exact location, only to the state or territory in which they are located. See the Shortage Area Geographic Compilation Logic page for more information.


Why do quotation marks appear around the data when I download data in Excel?

Due to the way certain Microsoft applications process numbers, the HDW has added quotation marks to data fields in certain instances. For a detailed explanation, please see the Data Download Help page.


I’m having trouble with the HRSA Data Warehouse (HDW) website. How can I get help?

Help documentation and Tutorials are available for:

For additional assistance, visit http://www.hrsa.gov or contact the HRSA Contact Center at 877-464-4772, weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET (except Federal holidays).


Map Tool FAQs

How do I move around the map?

There are two ways that users can pan and move the map:

  1. Use the four arrow controls (up, down, left, and right) in the circle located in the upper right-hand side of the map screen
  2. Click and drag within the map screen to move around the map


Can I zoom to a specific area on the map?

Yes, simply type in a state, county, city, or ZIP Code into the “Find a place” box. As you type, location suggestions will display to help narrow the search. Select the desired location and press “Enter.” The map will zoom to the boundary of the area entered.

To return to a national view, click on the house icon in the vertical menu on the right-hand side of the tool.


What do the map tool buttons on the right-hand side do?

The four arrows in the circle allow users to move the map up, down, left, or right. The tools in the vertical toolbar have the following functions:

  • Plus – allows users to zoom in
  • Minus – allows users to zoom out
  • House – allows users to return to the default, national view of the map
  • Crosshair – allows users to zoom to their location (note: this is based upon the location of a users’ internet service provider (ISP) and may not reflect the exact physical location)
  • Area/Pencil – allows users to identify a specific area on the map to display the data details


How do I add layers to the map?

To add layers to the map, look at the options listed in the menus on the left-hand side of the tool. Layers are organized into categories to make it simpler to find the layers that you are looking for.

When you see the layer that you want, simply check the box next to the name of the layer that you want to add that layer to the map.


Can I change the order of the layers?

Yes, you can change the order of the layers. First, click on “Layer Controls and Legend” in the left-hand menu of the tool to expand that panel. The top layer is displayed highlighted in blue with other layers displayed in order from top to bottom.

Reorder the layers by clicking on the up to down arrows beside each layer name to change the order on the map.


Can I see labels on my map?

The map tool does allow you to display labels on the map. After you have added a layer (or layers) to the map, click on “Layer Controls and Legend” in the left-hand menu of the tool to expand that panel, then click on the “Show Labels” link in upper right-hand corner.

The “Label Layers” dialog box will open, allowing users to choose which layer(s) they want labels for, and what specific data field that they would like to use as the label. Make the appropriate selections and click on the “Apply” button.


I added labels – why don’t I see them on the map?

Due to the large amount of data that may be displayed on a map, labels are only visible when the map tool is zoomed in to a scale of 1in = 30mi. If you cannot see labels, use one of the zoom methods until the map scale show near the bottom of the map shows the proper zoom level.


What do the map symbols mean?

The symbols on the map for most layers are predefined in the Map Tool. To see the legend for your map, simply click on “Layer Controls and Legend” in the left-hand menu of the tool to expand that panel, then click on the “Show Legend” link in upper left-hand corner.

The legend for all layers on your map will be displayed.


Can I change the color and symbols on the map?

The colors and symbols for most map data are predefined by the tool. However, users can choose from four different symbols and 24 different colors for HRSA Grants data.


Can I show my own data on the map?

Yes, you can upload your own data and display it on the map. You must have a file that contains the coordinates of the data elements (latitude and longitude), and the file must be a .CSV formatted file.

First, click on “Layer Controls and Legend” in the left-hand menu of the tool to expand that panel. Use the “Browse” feature to locate your data file. The data will default to show on the map as red circles, but you can choose alternate symbols and colors. You can also choose a custom name for the layer.

Please note that the Map Tool displays your custom data on your computer only – it is not transferred to the HDW server or saved in any way.


Can I change the base map?

Yes, users can choose from four base map options: Street Map (default view), Satellite Map, Light Gray Map, and No Base Map.

To change the base map, click on “Base Map and Boundaries” in the left-hand menu of the tool to expand that panel, choose one of the options for the base map display.


How can I get details about a point or points on a map layer?

Use the Identify Tool to provide additional data about data displayed on the Map Tool. Add the layer or layers that you want to the map. Click on the “Identify” tool icon from the vertical tool palette in the map tool (looks like crosshairs). While holding down the mouse button, click and drag a rectangle on your map to select a particular area that you are interested in. A green bar will appear on the top of the tool with a message about how many data points have been selected.

You will see a table of data below the map. The columns shown are pre-selected in the tool and differ by data set.


Can I export and save the data on my computer?

Yes, you can export the data. From the data table below the map, choose the layer you want to export, choose the file type you would like (Excel, PDF, or KML), and click on the “Export” button.


Can I display multiple Data table while using the identify feature?

You can only see data for one layer at a time. In the “Identify Result Layer” drop down menu, choose the layer that you are interested in. You can select a different layer at any time – the data table refreshes with the columns for the selected data layer.


How can I sort data column in the Data Table?

Yes, you can filter and sort the data in the data table. To sort, simply click on the up or down arrows beside the column name to sort in ascending or descending order. To filter, use the filter input box in each column; as you type, the data in the data table is filtered. To unfilter, simply delete any inputs in the boxes.


Can I filter the data shown on the map?

Yes, you can apply filters to the data on the map. Follow the instructions to filter data in the data table. When the data table has the filters applied, simply click on the “Apply Filters to Map” button near the upper-right hand corner of the data table. The points on the map will be filtered in the same way as the data table. To clear the filter, click on the “Clear Filters on Map” button.


How can I print a map?

After you have added layers to your map, you can save it using the “Print” button in the upper right-hand corner of the Map Tool. The map will be saved as a .PDF for printing or future use.

There are several options available including: display the map with or without the legend, paper size and orientation, and adding a custom title. The .PDF file will also display the date that your map was created.