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International Journal of Health Geographics

Benjamin Amoah, Emanuele Giorgi, Daniel J Heyes, Stef van Burren, Peter John Diggle
BACKGROUND: Undernutrition among children under 5 years of age continues to be a public health challenge in many low- and middle-income countries and can lead to growth stunting. Infectious diseases may also affect child growth, however their actual impact on the latter can be difficult to quantify. In this paper, we analyse data from 20 Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) conducted in 13 African countries to investigate the relationship between malaria and stunting. Our objective is to make inference on the association between malaria incidence during the first year of life and height-for-age Z-scores (HAZs)...
February 27, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
Siobhán Masterson, Conor Teljeur, John Cullinan, Andrew W Murphy, Conor Deasy, Akke Vellinga
BACKGROUND: Internationally, the majority of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests where resuscitation is attempted (OHCAs) occur in private residential locations i.e. at home. The prospect of survival for this patient group is universally dismal. Understanding of the area-level factors that affect the incidence of OHCA at home may help national health planners when implementing community resuscitation training and services. METHODS: We performed spatial smoothing using Bayesian conditional autoregression on case data from the Irish OHCA register...
February 20, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
Fernando L P Oliveira, André L F Cançado, Gustavo de Souza, Gladston J P Moreira, Martin Kulldorff
BACKGROUND: The spatial scan statistic is widely used by public health professionals in the detection of spatial clusters in inhomogeneous point process. The most popular version of the spatial scan statistic uses a circular-shaped scanning window. Several other variants, using other parametric or non-parametric shapes, are also available. However, none of them offer information about the uncertainty on the borders of the detected clusters. METHOD: We propose a new method to evaluate uncertainty on the boundaries of spatial clusters identified through the spatial scan statistic for Poisson data...
February 17, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
Els Ducheyne, Nhu Nguyen Tran Minh, Nabil Haddad, Ward Bryssinckx, Evans Buliva, Frédéric Simard, Mamunur Rahman Malik, Johannes Charlier, Valérie De Waele, Osama Mahmoud, Muhammad Mukhtar, Ali Bouattour, Abdulhafid Hussain, Guy Hendrickx, David Roiz
BACKGROUND: Aedes-borne diseases as dengue, zika, chikungunya and yellow fever are an emerging problem worldwide, being transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. Lack of up to date information about the distribution of Aedes species hampers surveillance and control. Global databases have been compiled but these did not capture data in the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR), and any models built using these datasets fail to identify highly suitable areas where one or both species may occur...
February 14, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
Linde Van Hecke, Hannah Verhoeven, Peter Clarys, Delfien Van Dyck, Nico Van de Weghe, Tim Baert, Benedicte Deforche, Jelle Van Cauwenberg
BACKGROUND: Low physical activity levels and high levels of sedentary time among adolescents call for population wide interventions. Public open spaces can be important locations for adolescents' physical activity. This study aimed to describe the prevalence, frequency and context of public open space visitation and to gain insight into the individual, social and physical environmental factors associated with public open space use among 12- to 16-year-old Flemish (Belgian) adolescents...
January 22, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
Francois M Moukam Kakmeni, Ritter Y A Guimapi, Frank T Ndjomatchoua, Sansoa A Pedro, James Mutunga, Henri E Z Tonnang
BACKGROUND: Malaria is highly sensitive to climatic variables and is strongly influenced by the presence of vectors in a region that further contribute to parasite development and sustained disease transmission. Mathematical analysis of malaria transmission through the use and application of the value of the basic reproduction number (R0) threshold is an important and useful tool for the understanding of disease patterns. METHODS: Temperature dependence aspect of R0 obtained from dynamical mathematical network model was used to derive the spatial distribution maps for malaria transmission under different climatic and intervention scenarios...
January 16, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
J Freyssenge, F Renard, A M Schott, L Derex, N Nighoghossian, K Tazarourte, C El Khoury
BACKGROUND: The World Health Organization refers to stroke, the second most frequent cause of death in the world, in terms of pandemic. Present treatments are only effective within precise time windows. Only 10% of thrombolysis patients are eligible. Late assessment of the patient resulting from admission and lack of knowledge of the symptoms is the main explanation of lack of eligibility. METHODS: The aim is the measurement of the time of access to treatment facilities for stroke victims, using ambulances (firemen ambulances or EMS ambulances) and private car...
January 12, 2018: International Journal of Health Geographics
Earl W Duncan, Nicole M White, Kerrie Mengersen
BACKGROUND: When analysing spatial data, it is important to account for spatial autocorrelation. In Bayesian statistics, spatial autocorrelation is commonly modelled by the intrinsic conditional autoregressive prior distribution. At the heart of this model is a spatial weights matrix which controls the behaviour and degree of spatial smoothing. The purpose of this study is to review the main specifications of the spatial weights matrix found in the literature, and together with some new and less common specifications, compare the effect that they have on smoothing and model performance...
December 16, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Fei Gao, Wahida Kihal, Nolwenn Le Meur, Marc Souris, Séverine Deguen
BACKGROUND: Spatial accessibility indices are increasingly applied when investigating inequalities in health. Although most studies are making mentions of potential errors caused by the edge effect, many acknowledge having neglected to consider this concern by establishing spatial analyses within a finite region, settling for hypothesizing that accessibility to facilities will be under-reported. Our study seeks to assess the effect of edge on the accuracy of defining healthcare provider access by comparing healthcare provider accessibility accounting or not for the edge effect, in a real-world application...
December 11, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Jessie A Gleason, Kathleen M Ross, Rebecca D Greeley
BACKGROUND: Although the incidence of legionellosis throughout North America and Europe continues to increase, public health investigations have not been able to identify a common exposure in most cases. Over 80% of cases are sporadic with no known source. To better understand the role of the macro-environment in legionellosis risk, a retrospective ecological study assessed associations between population-level measures of demographic, socioeconomic, and environmental factors and high-risk areas...
December 2, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Jan Bauer, David A Groneberg, Werner Maier, Roxanne Manek, Frank Louwen, Dörthe Brüggmann
BACKGROUND: Health care accessibility is known to differ geographically. With this study we focused on analysing accessibility of general and specialized obstetric units in England and Germany with regard to urbanity, area deprivation and neonatal outcome using routine data. METHODS: We used a floating catchment area method to measure obstetric care accessibility, the degree of urbanization (DEGURBA) to measure urbanity and the index of multiple deprivation to measure area deprivation...
December 1, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Charlene C Nielsen, Carl G Amrhein, Alvaro R Osornio-Vargas
BACKGROUND: The geography of where pregnant mothers live is important for understanding outdoor environmental habitat that may result in adverse birth outcomes. We investigated whether more babies were born small for gestational age or low birth weight at term to mothers living in environments with a higher accumulation of outdoor hazards. METHODS: Live singleton births from the Alberta Perinatal Health Program, 2006-2012, were classified according to birth outcome, and used in a double kernel density estimation to determine ratios of each outcome per total births...
November 28, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Kankoé Sallah, Roch Giorgi, Linus Bengtsson, Xin Lu, Erik Wetter, Paul Adrien, Stanislas Rebaudet, Renaud Piarroux, Jean Gaudart
BACKGROUND: Mathematical models of human mobility have demonstrated a great potential for infectious disease epidemiology in contexts of data scarcity. While the commonly used gravity model involves parameter tuning and is thus difficult to implement without reference data, the more recent radiation model based on population densities is parameter-free, but biased. In this study we introduce the new impedance model, by analogy with electricity. Previous research has compared models on the basis of a few specific available spatial patterns...
November 22, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Irene Garcia-Martí, Raúl Zurita-Milla, Arnold J H van Vliet, Willem Takken
BACKGROUND: Tick populations and tick-borne infections have steadily increased since the mid-1990s posing an ever-increasing risk to public health. Yet, modelling tick dynamics remains challenging because of the lack of data and knowledge on this complex phenomenon. Here we present an approach to model and map tick dynamics using volunteered data. This approach is illustrated with 9 years of data collected by a group of trained volunteers who sampled active questing ticks (AQT) on a monthly basis and for 15 locations in the Netherlands...
November 14, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Shaun A Langley, Joseph P Messina, Nathan Moore
BACKGROUND: Volunteered geographic information (VGI) has strong potential to be increasingly valuable to scientists in collaboration with non-scientists. The abundance of mobile phones and other wireless forms of communication open up significant opportunities for the public to get involved in scientific research. As these devices and activities become more abundant, questions of uncertainty and error in volunteer data are emerging as critical components for using volunteer-sourced spatial data...
November 6, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
M Helbich, V Blüml, T de Jong, P L Plener, M-P Kwan, N D Kapusta
BACKGROUND: Urban-rural disparities in suicide mortality have received considerable attention. Varying conceptualizations of urbanity may contribute to the conflicting findings. This ecological study on Germany assessed how and to what extent urban-rural suicide associations are affected by 14 different urban-rural indicators. METHODS: Indicators were based on continuous or k-means classified population data, land-use data, planning typologies, or represented population-based accessibility indicators...
October 30, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Enrique Gracia, Antonio López-Quílez, Miriam Marco, Marisol Lila
BACKGROUND: 'Place' matters in understanding prevalence variations and inequalities in child maltreatment risk. However, most studies examining ecological variations in child maltreatment risk fail to take into account the implications of the spatial and temporal dimensions of neighborhoods. In this study, we conduct a high-resolution small-area study to analyze the influence of neighborhood characteristics on the spatio-temporal epidemiology of child maltreatment risk. METHODS: We conducted a 12-year (2004-2015) small-area Bayesian spatio-temporal epidemiological study with all families with child maltreatment protection measures in the city of Valencia, Spain...
October 18, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Elizabeth A Mack, Daoqin Tong, Kevin Credit
BACKGROUND: Food access is a global issue, and for this reason, a wealth of studies are dedicated to understanding the location of food deserts and the benefits of urban gardens. However, few studies have linked these two strands of research together to analyze whether urban gardening activity may be a step forward in addressing issues of access for food desert residents. METHODS: The Phoenix, Arizona metropolitan area is used as a case to demonstrate the utility of spatial optimization models for siting urban gardens near food deserts and on vacant land...
October 16, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
A Ghenassia, J B Beuscart, G Ficheur, F Occelli, E Babykina, E Chazard, M Genin
BACKGROUND: The availability of big data in healthcare and the intensive development of data reuse and georeferencing have opened up perspectives for health spatial analysis. However, fine-scale spatial studies of ecological and medical databases are limited by the change of support problem and thus a lack of spatial unit interoperability. The use of spatial disaggregation methods to solve this problem introduces errors into the spatial estimations. Here, we present a generic, two-step method for merging medical and ecological databases that avoids the use of spatial disaggregation methods, while maximizing the spatial resolution...
October 3, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
Karima Hammas, Jacqueline Yaouanq, Morgane Lannes, Gilles Edan, Jean-François Viel
BACKGROUND: Despite intensive research over several decades, the etiology of multiple sclerosis (MS) remains poorly understood, although environmental factors are supposedly implicated. Our goal was to identify spatial clusters of MS incident cases at the small-area level to provide clues to local environmental risk factors that might cause or trigger the disease. METHODS: A population-based and multi-stage study was performed in the French Brittany region to accurately ascertain the clinical onset of disease during the 2000-2004 period...
September 21, 2017: International Journal of Health Geographics
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