Intended for healthcare professionals


Visualising health inequalities

BMJ 2019; 367 doi: (Published 15 October 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;367:l5976
  1. Will Stahl-Timmins, data visualisation designer1,
  2. John Appleby, director of research and chief economist2
  1. 1The BMJ, London, UK
  2. 2Nuffield Trust, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to: W Stahl-Timmins Wstahl-timmins{at}

Announcing a new data visualisation competition in healthcare

Given the ubiquity of data in our lives it is perhaps unsurprising that methods to help us understand this rising tide of digits have become increasingly popular.12 Techniques such as bar and line charts have helped us to see patterns in numerical data since at least the late 18th century.3 However, the digital revolution has boosted the possibilities for visualising data, and there is now a thriving field of practice and research in “data visualisation.”

Visualisation transforms data into vibrant, often interactive, pieces that allow viewers to explore and interact with data in new ways. Infographics are related but subtly different, blending data visualisations, illustrations, and images with text to enable visual storytelling. The BMJ has been exploring these possibilities for the past five years, the results of which can be seen at

Most news providers now have dedicated teams for making infographics and data visualisations. For anyone interested in developing skills in data storytelling, there are courses, handbooks, societies, and conferences …

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