247547 Tobacco Informatics Monitoring System (TIMS): Tool for Dissemination and Visualization of Population Level Data

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 10:50 AM

Anne Philipneri, MPH , Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada
Shawn O'Connor, PhD , Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada
Robert Schwartz, PhD , Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Ontario Tobacco Research Unit, Toronto, ON, Canada
Objective: This presentation will demonstrate the Tobacco Informatics Monitoring System (TIMS), a web site that is being used to disseminate complex population level data on key tobacco indicators. TIMS is currently being used for program planning, policy decision making, surveillance and evaluation, and formative research in Ontario, Canada. The presentation will describe ways to overcome the challenges in providing comprehensible information from complex survey data and developing a user friendly website for various stakeholders.

Methods: The site design included several iterations and involved key informants throughout the process (practitioners, policy-makers, advocates, and researchers). Technical requirements for TIMS were developed by reviewing existing tobacco-related data portals (CDC's STATE system, WHO's Core Health Indicators, California's C-STAT). Results: TIMS provides geographical and demographic comparison of over 140 indicators related to tobacco use, smoking cessation, prevention, protection, and public opinion which are linked to Census indicators. Users are able to navigate through the site to access millions of unique data points and obtain results by population (age, sex, education, occupation, income, place of birth, language, and aboriginal status), geography (national, provincial, and sub-provincial), and multiple surveys spanning multiple years. Display options include table, chart, and map, with dynamic capabilities to sort, group, print, and download.

Conclusion: TIMS provides new insights into emerging issues and trends. The site facilitates links between health-outcome results and the decision-making process such as consideration of health equity issues focusing on priority sub-populations and high-risk areas. This information has the potential to inform tobacco control efforts and knowledge dissemination efforts in other areas of public health.

Learning Areas:
Communication and informatics
Public health or related public policy
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Participants will gain a better understanding of the strengths of informatics systems to inform tobacco control planning, decision making, and surveillance

Keywords: Tobacco Control, Health Information

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I assisted with the site development and conducted most of the analysis.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.