5199.0: Wednesday, November 15, 2000 - 2:30 PM

Abstract #18006

Health Disparities Data and Issues for Boston

Phyllis D. Sims, MS, Office of Research, Health Assessment, and Data Systems, Boston Public Health Commission, Boston, MA, 617-361-7536, Albacd@aol.com

Boston has a population of approximately 575,000 residents who live in 16 neighborhoods, each with its own identity. Rates for health indicators vary widely across these neighborhoods. The role of varying socioeconomic factors, age, gender, race and ethnicity, language, culture, and sexual orientation among the residents of those neighborhoods should be considered in accounting for these health disparities, yet when analyses are made data issues and limitations usually prohibit taking many of these factors into account. The Boston population is confronted by a number of health problems such as cancer, heart disease, asthma, substance abuse, HIV/AIDS, infant mortality, and homicide. Data for some of Bostonís health problems indicate gender, age, and racial or ethnic disparities and imply socioeconomic disparities as well. However, efforts to fully explore why, where, and to what extent such disparities exist are frequently hampered by the limitations of data, which occur when the data are collected, reported, and analyzed. In addition, actions taken for the elimination of these disparities-policy-making decisions, identification of program priorities, allocation of resources, and development and implementation of effective public health interventions-are also hampered by the limitations of data. These limitations must be addressed in concert with efforts to eliminate disparities.

Learning Objectives: n/a

Keywords: Access, Access to Health Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA