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Solutions to improve citizens' access to assistance and care services in the Brussels-Capital Region

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Data form one of the essential components of digital transformation. Good data management has a positive effect on both internal operations and external interaction, and it creates new opportunities.

The Social Coordination and Documentation Centre (CDCS-CMDC asbl), via the Brussels Social service, plays a key role in the provision of data (information) about the range of welfare and health services within the Brussels-Capital Region, for both professionals and citizens.

In order to optimise the sharing of these data, the CDCS-CMDC called upon the services of the BRIC.

In 2017, the BRIC completed the redevelopment of the current platform https://social.brussels, and installed new search functionality, a map view, and web services.

The provision of all data through one central database offers many advantages for users. It means they can find all the information they need in one place. The database therefore gains in importance, addresses a larger community, and is transversal. And very importantly, the updates only need to be done in one place.

Brussels Social also forms part of the smartcity.brussels story via the open data portal of the BRIC and the Brussels-Capital Region. (data available as open data on datastore)

Thanks to the BRIC and its data hosting, other platforms are also able to benefit from the opportunities available, since the web services of Brussels Social not only provide data but also search functionalities. It means that small organisations do not have to invest in developing their own search engine but can reuse the existing one.

The platform's availability in two languages gives the CDCS-CMDC a unique position in Brussels. Federal data can also be integrated and projects at federal level can rely on the bilingual data within Brussels Social.

The data of the CDCS-CMDC are made available free of charge using a CC BY licence.

A Creative Commons licence (or CC licence) is a public licence. It is not necessary to ask permission beforehand to read, share or use the information; this permission is granted automatically. The BY (attribution) does indicate, however, that source citation is required.

Finally, a few examples of collaboration:

1. The My Brussels app, available in the App Store and on Google Play, contains data sets from Brussels Social in relation to childcare and care homes. The number of data sets will be further increased in the future.

2. Born in Brussels Professional: https://www.bornin.brussels/born-in-brussels-professionnels/

Born in Brussels PRO is a screening tool for professionals (doctors, midwives, etc.) that enables early detection of problems in pregnant women. It includes an orientation section in which the tool uses open data from Brussels Social and search functions by address or by type of service to guide patients towards the appropriate assistance. It is possible to combine 'search by address', categorisation of the service, and the organisation details.

3. Nurseries in the Brussels-Capital Region: https://www.ccc-ggc.brussels/nl/search-nursery

This site reuses the search functionalities of social.brussels, such as 'search by language status', 'search by address' and 'search by name' to find all childcare services in the Brussels-Capital Region, whether they are French-speaking, Dutch-speaking or bilingual. What is more, this website is hosted by the BRIC and is an initiative of the BRIC.

Testimonial from Wouter Reynkens, Open Data Manager social.brussels

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