266042 Population Case Finding: Identifying Community Clusters of Children Impacted by the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

David M. Abramson, PhD MPH , National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Columbia University, New York, NY
Tasha Stehling-Ariza, MPH , Department of Epidemiology, Columbia University, New York, NY
Akilah Banister, MPH , National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, NY
Jonathan J. Sury, MPH, CPH , National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Columbia University, New York, NY
Rebecca May, MPA , National Center for Disaster Preparedness, Columbia University, New York, NY
Several studies in the immediate aftermath of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill chronicled the resident population's psychological and emotional response to the catastrophic accident, and the perceived health effects on the residents. Unknown were the long-term impacts on the Gulf ecosystem and on its social system. The first phase of the Coastal Population Impact Project surveyed 1,203 residents of the coastal population in the summer of 2010. The project's second phase, reported here, focused on a population “case-finding”: identifying community clusters of children living in a four-state area in the Gulf who had been adversely affected by the oil spill, whether through direct physical exposure or secondarily through economic and social effects. A mixed method strategy was employed to identify these community clusters and to explore the potential mechanisms of the oil spill's health effects on children. The project first developed a proxy measure of impact by assembling secondary data sources – BP claims data, unemployment data, and oil monitoring data – into a standardized z-score per zip code. The second stage involved conducting over one thousand brief household surveys in randomly sampled census blocks within targeted zip codes. Once these primary data had further refined the search to a smaller number of communities, focus groups were conducted with residents to explore the mechanism of impact of the oil spill on children. Lastly, key informant interviews were conducted with community leaders and health care and social service providers to further identify system and service gaps for pediatric care.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe a mixed-methods strategy for identifying populations affected by technological accidents or similar dispersed or diffuse exposures 2. Contrast direct physical effects and indirect social and economic effects on children's health.

Keywords: Children's Health, Disasters

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the principal investigator of this study
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.