About and frequently asked questions

About and frequently asked questions

The Reading Observatory

The observatory was developed to provide local decision makers and Reading residents with a single source of up to date data about Reading and the people who live, work, and learn here.

The observatory is built by ESRI UK using their ‘Instant Atlas’ technology. Data is taken from a large National Data Service and presented in different formats to suit different audiences and their purposes. The National Data Service draws in data from many, validated, open data sources such as the Office for National Statistics.

Reading Borough Council further develop and expand the scope of the site to draw in wider sources of local information and to make the site as user-friendly and relevant as possible.

The Observatory has been developed to provide users with different types of information depending on the depth and breadth of the questions they bring to the site.

If you have general questions about Reading and the people that live here then we recommend that you start by looking at the themed reports available from the home page.

If you are looking for a specific item of data, perhaps in order to do some of your own analysis, then the data explorer offers a search/filter feature to allow you to find, and visualise and download the data you require.

If you want to see a detailed assessment on a specific topic, or wish to be signposted to further resources then you will find this in our Needs Assessments and further resources section.

If you are unable to find what you need on the site then please let us know by letting us know your views here.

Yes, you can, and we would encourage you to do so. Data is subject to the Open Government Licence (nationalarchives.gov.uk)

When reproducing or reusing maps then you must us the following copyright statements

You must use the following copyright statements when you reproduce or use the maps:

  • Contains National Statistics data © Crown copyright and database right 2020
  • Contains OS data © Crown copyright and database right 2020

Data contained within the data toolbox, the JSNA Summary, and the Covid-19 recovery report is updated by ESRI UK. The majority of data is updated from sources which are directly linked to the ESRI UK National Data Service. These data will be updated within 5 working days of the source data being updated. Please refer to the data item’s “metadata” to view update frequency and details of when the data was last updated.

Data contained within written Needs Assessments are static documents and will not be regularly updated. Please refer to the details within the documents which describe the time periods to which the data relates.

Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA)

The Health and Social Care Act 2012  introduced duties and powers for health and wellbeing boards in relation to Joint Strategic Needs Assessments (JSNAs) and Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategies (JHWSs). The Local Authority and local clinical commissioning group (CCG) have equal and joint duties to prepare JSNAs and JHWSs, through the health and wellbeing board.

JSNAs and JHWSs are an important locally owned process. The purpose of JSNAs and JHWSs is to improve the health and wellbeing of the local community and reduce inequalities for all ages. They are not an end in themselves, but a continuous process of strategic assessment and planning – the core aim is to develop local evidence-based priorities for commissioning which will improve the public’s health and reduce inequalities. Their outputs, in the form of evidence and the analysis of needs, and agreed priorities, will be used to help to determine what actions local authorities, the local NHS and other partners need to take to meet health and social care needs, and to address the wider determinants that impact on health and wellbeing.

JSNA and JHWS outputs must be published. Making them public will explain to the local community what the board’s assessment of the local needs is and what its proposals to address them are.

It is the responsibility of each local area to determine the form that their JSNA will take. In Reading, we see the JSNA as key programme of work which encompasses a wide-range of assessment, planning and commissioning processes taking place on behalf of the local population. Our key aims for JSNA are:

  1.  To ground these processes in a core, single evidence base
  2.  To bring their outputs  together in once place in order that we can:
    1. document our assessment of need
    2. further expand our local evidence base

The Reading Observatory site is the home of this core evidence base and documentation of assessment of need.

The site is managed by Reading Borough Council on behalf of the members of the Reading Health and Wellbeing Board. Our aim is for this resource to be provide local decision makers, and  residents with the information they need about Reading and it’s population.  We encourage feedback and contribution to the library of resources that make up Reading’s JSNA.

If you have conducted, or are planning to conduct, an assessment or piece of research about Reading and the people who live, work, or learn here, we want to hear from you. Please do get in touch using the email address found on our support pages.

If there are topics that you think are not covered which should be then please let us know by completing our short survey.

Needs assessments and profiles

A Health Needs Assessment (HNA) is a systematic approach to understanding the needs of a population. It is intended to be used as part of a wider commissioning process enabling the most effective support for those in the greatest need to be planned and delivered. Responding to a health needs assessments gives an opportunity to improve outcomes for specific groups. For example, children and young people or those living with dementia.

In addition to readily available public health data, such as that that is available through the Reading Observatory, a HNA will take a participatory approach to gathering information an intelligence from professional organisations as well as and from the group of people whom the assessment is aimed to support.

Many needs assessments will have been conducted on behalf of the Reading population over the past few years with further planned over the next 12 months and beyond. Those included on this site are those that have been conducted most recently and that contain information that we are able to share in the public domain.

We aim to expand the breadth of needs assessments that are included on this site over the coming months.