Last month, Cook County health officials announced that they’d launched a new, publicly available data portal called the Cook County Health Atlas. 

The data shows nearly 1 in 5 adults in Forest Park are living with depression. The ratio is similar across Cook County. The data also shows that roughly 24 percent of adults in Forest Park reported binge drinking, defined as having at least five drinks for men and four drinks for women on occasion within the last month. That’s slightly higher than the 22 percent reported across the county. The data is from 2019, before the pandemic. 

The drug overdose mortality rate from 2013 to 2017 in Forest Park was roughly 32 deaths per 100,000 people while in neighboring Oak Park it was not quite 12 deaths per 100,000 people. 

On Oct. 26, Cook County officials announced that they’ll be awarding $14 million in grant funding across four years to expand mental health and substance use prevention, treatment and support in the suburbs. 

Grants will range from $250,000 to over $1 million each and are part of the Building Healthy Communities Behavioral Health Initiative, funded under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), officials said. 

“Today’s announcement demonstrates our commitment to the well-being of all Cook County residents,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle in a statement. “This investment in behavioral health as part of our Building Healthy Communities Initiative ensures that we’re taking a holistic approach to healthcare that prioritizes mental health, as well as physical health.”

Applications for the grants are being accepted now through Dec. 7, and awards will be announced in January. For more information and to apply online, visit:

County officials said on Oct. 12 that the new Health Atlas allows “residents, community organizations, policymakers, researchers and public health stakeholders” access to neighborhood-level health data from over 120 suburbs in Cook County. 

“In the Health Atlas, users can look at more than 100 indicators of health, and see them visualized in maps, charts, graphs and tables of health-related data that matter to them,” they added. 

The public data spans six categories, including health outcomes, health behaviors, healthcare, demographics, socioeconomic status, and physical environment, officials said. 

The Cook County public health department developed the Health Atlas in collaboration with the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health (UIC SPH) and Metopio, a data, analytics and visualization platform.