258993 Property Parcel Maintenance and Public Health: Developing the Property Assessment Tool (PAT)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Allison Krusky, MPH, RD , School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Thomas Reischl, PhD , Prevention Research Center of Michgian, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI
Marc Zimmerman, PhD , Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Robert Lipton, PhD , Emergency Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Susan Franzen, MS , Prevention Research Center of Michigan, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Flint, MI
Alison Miller, PhD , School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Sophie Aiyer, PhD , School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
Social disorganization theorists assert the physical condition and social dynamics of neighborhoods are important predictors of crime and social capital (friendships, kinships, informal ties), which are related to other health outcomes. Property deterioration, suggested by Broken Windows Theory, may lead to crime and to poor health outcomes such as premature births, and STIs. There are, however, few available measures of property parcels that are reliable, efficient, and focus on predictors of crime and other health problems. As part of a larger evaluation of the Michigan Youth Violence Prevention Center, we developed the Property Assessment Tool (PAT) to assess property deterioration. We conducted a baseline assessment of 6,137 property parcels in Flint, Michigan. Trained observers recorded the type of parcel (vacant, commercial, residential, etc.), indicators of decay (fire damage, broken windows, etc.), and ratings of maintenance (structural quality, landscaping, litter/trash, etc.). The observers used the PAT reliably after attending a short training. The average inter-rater agreement for dichotomous variables ranged from 85% to 98%; the average inter-rating correlations for the rating scales ranged from 0.51 to 0.80. The observers noted broken windows (13%), discarded furniture/appliances (4%), and graffiti (2%) during the baseline assessment. The distribution of some rating scales (e.g., structures, landscape) were skewed because of the large number of vacant lots/properties (42%). We will present baseline values and short-term outcomes (to be assessed in June, 2012). Discussion of these results will focus on the uses of the PAT for needs assessment and program evaluation of neighborhood-based public health initiatives.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the process for conducting a property assessment using the PAT. 2. Compare the differences between PAT and other extant instruments used for evaluating neighborhood physical conditions. 3. Explain the theoretical underpinnings of Social Disorganization Theory and its relationships with urban blight of neighborhoods, crime and health.

Keywords: Community, Evaluation

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I received my MPH in Health Education Health Behavior from the University of Michigan in 2011, and was the project manager for the property assessment project.
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.