250193 Use of Geographic information systems (GIS) in breast cancer health disparities research: A systematic review

Monday, October 31, 2011

Keila Pena-Hernandez, MT , Missouri Cancer Registry, Informatics Institute, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
Suzanne Boren, PhD, MHA , Health Management and Informatics and Informatics Institute, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
Jeannette Jackson-Thompson, MSPH, PhD , Health Management & Informatics, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO
Background: Since the 19th century, mapping the occurrence of disease has been a valuable research tool in studying spatial patterns of health events and disease outcomes. John Snow and the Broad street cholera outbreak of 1854 is a hallmark example to demonstrate the power of maps in clearly delineating relationships within complex scenarios such as the London cholera outbreak. GIS is more than just mapping; the principles of spatial analysis tied into GIS allow for its value as a research tool. Purpose: Identify GIS spatial analysis tools that are currently most valuable in breast cancer disparities research. Methods: We conducted a review of evidence based published articles from January 2000 through January 2011. We searched the PubMed and Ovid Medline databases with the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) terms of “breast neoplasm”, and “geographic information systems”. Results: The results from this systematic literature review provide a thorough understanding of various GIS approaches that researchers have used to study breast cancer health disparities. The most commonly used spatial tools in health research are diffusion studies, regression analysis, disease mapping, identification of risk factors through map comparisons, and clustering techniques. Implications: Systematically reviewing evidence-based literature will provide the necessary framework to better inform public health informatics research that is directed towards reducing breast cancer health disparities.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1. Define geographic information systems and how it can be used in disparities research. 2. Discuss how systematically reviewing evidence based literature can provide a framework for informing public health practitioners attempting to reduce disparities in breast cancer.

Keywords: Geographic Information Systems, Cancer

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Keila Pena-Hernandez
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.