Health profiles of Hamilton: Spatial characterisation of neighbourhoods for health investigations
Source: GeoJournal, Volume 53, Number 2, February 2001 , pp. 135-147(13)
This paper is part of a larger research program which employs a mixed-methods approach to study the determinants of health at the local level using specific neighborhoods in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. In this paper, multivariate, spatial statistical techniques and geographic information systems are used to address questions about the characterization of neighbourhoods, based on socioeconomic determinants of health and risk factors such as smoking. While neighbourhood characterization has been a component of public health surveillance for some time, geostatistical techniques can now be used to derive more accurate representation of neighbourhoods for use in subsequent analysis. We utilize principal components analysis to reduce the data and extract the components that represent the underlying local processes. Principal components are also overlayed on comparative mortality figures to visualize where the socio-demographic determinants of health correspond spatially with mortality patterns. Predicted values from the components are then analysed for spatial clustering using local indicators of spatial association. The findings reveal a pattern of distinct neighbourhoods that will be used in subsequent quantitative and qualitative stages in the larger research programme. The results can also be used to inform public health policy and to target public health interventions.
Document Type: Regular paper
Affiliations: 1: E-mail: email@example.com) 2: School of Geography and Geology, McMaster University & McMaster Institute of Environment & Health, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 3: Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 4: Central-West Health Planning Information Network, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 5: Centre for Health Services & Policy Research, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Publication date: 2001-02-01