I'd like to extract all the hospital locations in the US from Open Street Map as a reference for my geocoding project. I know how to get all the OSM data for a small area with the QGIS plugin but not sure how to query a larger area?


5 Answers 5


Two more ideas:

1) The read-only Overpass API. I don't know that it'll work for the whole US in one pass, but maybe if you extend the time out enough...? For a smaller area (.5 degree max) and with the benefit of a (minimal) UI, you can access Overpass via the XAPI Query Builder. There, you can put amenity=hospital in the tag search, select your area, and go.

2) Geofabrik downloads, filtered with Osmosis, as described in How to extract partial data for large regions? on the OpenStreetMap Help.

  • The XAPI Query Builder is not limited to .5 degree max. But its "live query" mode is. Click on the "Overpass API" link for example and it will work fine.
    – FredB
    Jun 5, 2013 at 16:26

Nominatim can do this but on a large scale it would be more efficient to download the USA extracts and use your own.

Nominatim Example:




        "place_id": "640932",
        "licence": "Data © OpenStreetMap contributors, ODbL 1.0. http://www.openstreetmap.org/copyright",
        "osm_type": "node",
        "osm_id": "257489577",
        "boundingbox": [
        "lat": "42.3371263",
        "lon": "-71.1060391",
        "display_name": "Children's Hospital, Blackfan Street, Fenway, Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, 02215, United States of America",
        "class": "amenity",
        "type": "hospital",
        "importance": 0.44314331355821,
        "icon": "http://nominatim.openstreetmap.org/images/mapicons/health_hospital.p.20.png",
        "address": {
            "hospital": "Children's Hospital",
            "road": "Blackfan Street",
            "suburb": "Fenway",
            "city": "Boston",
            "county": "Suffolk County",
            "state": "Massachusetts",
            "postcode": "02215",
            "country": "United States of America",
            "country_code": "us"

for xml replace json with xml

Source: http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Nominatim

You might be better off asking here: https://help.openstreetmap.org/


This website can give you the correct info; http://osm2shp.ru/ it might be outdated (2016), but it will give you all the hospitals using amenity_pnt and all the ambulance stations using emergency_pnt. You can then import it into QGIS and filter it.


just check out the project healthsites.io



https://github.com/healthsites/healthsites/wiki To build a curated, open data commons of health facility data with OpenStreetMap

Supporting objectives

Our objective is to publish accessible health sites data to OpenStreetMap that is accurate and complete Accessible data People must be able to access accurate health care information in their area through a spatial lookup Healthsites.io must be interoperable with other systems The data is available from a link on the web site The data is available under an open license (ODBL) The data is available for download in accessible formats like .csv, shp, kml etc. The data is available through an API healthsites.io uses the OpenStreetMap data infrastructure to store the data


Have you look at the CloudMade Downloads website? They provide data in various formats for specific regions. This may have your required data?

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