142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

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Developing new measures to monitor disease burden in rural communities: Potential Lessons for HiAP from Maiji China

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 : 8:30 AM - 8:50 AM

Lai Sze Tso, PhD , School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI
Guowei Yu, PhD , West of China Institute of Environmental Health, Northwest University for Nationalities, Lanzhou, China
A pressing obstacle in implementing effective public health policies in rural communities is the lack of comprehensive multi-faceted data on causes of morbidity and mortality. Although individual government agencies collect extensive information for sector-specific reporting, each agency’s system provides a limited perspective of disease burden. This piece-meal approach restricts policy-makers in creating measures that effectively target the scope and multiple factors necessary for improving population health. This problem is amplified in developing countries where rural residents are routinely exposed to socio-economic inequalities and elevated health risks. Here, we deploy a collaborative strategy to address the complex factors impacting morbidity and mortality in rural settings, developing an inclusive evaluation measure (Comprehensive Grades Index, GI) to monitor the health and well-being of rural residents. Using Maiji district, China, as a case study, we combined weighted data from three prevalent indexes: (1) Infectious Diseases Monitoring System, (2) Causes of Death Monitoring System, and (3) New-Rural Cooperative Medical System, then assessed our GI measure against each of the single evaluation indexes. Because these indexes identify different contributors to the disease burden, we applied the analytic hierarchy process in our comprehensive index of the weighted data. Results suggest that reducing traffic accidents, cerebral vascular disease, ischemic heart disease, hypertension, and stomach cancer should be the main targets for improving community well-being. Following the health in all policies (HiAP) approach, our study offers potential lessons on how rural communities could benefit from inter-agency data sharing to better maximize population health and effective policy development.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control
Public health administration or related administration

Learning Objectives:
List three prominent governmental systems for reporting morbidity and mortality Describe how an integrative measure, the Comprehensive Grades Index (GI), is being developed to address the limits of current systems for assessing disease burden among a rural population

Keyword(s): Mortality, Health Assessment

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I helped in the rewriting of the paper abstract, and identified additional literature to situate the theoretical argument. I will also revise the final draft of the paper for presentation.
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.