New health data from Cleveland neighborhoods on obesity, hypertension and diabetes

Published on February 29, 2012 at 11:56 PM · No Comments

Today, the Prevention Research Center for Healthy Neighborhoods of Case Western Reserve University release new health data from Cleveland neighborhood groups on three of the most pressing public health concerns: obesity, hypertension, and diabetes.

The three data briefs - statistical public health publications - group Cleveland neighborhoods and provide prevalence estimates for diabetes, hypertension awareness and obesity using five years of local survey data. Previously, these measures were only available for the city of Cleveland.

"This data allow the local public health community to measure chronic diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and high blood pressure down to the neighborhood level. We are committed to ongoing data collection to show how 'place matters' - where you live makes a difference," says Elaine Borawski, PhD, the Angela Bowen Williamson Professorship in Community Nutrition at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine, primary investigator and co-director of the PRCHN at Case Western Reserve University, and co-author of the data briefs. "Most important, we now have a tool to examine how local initiatives to prevent and reduce chronic disease in our community can be shown to be effective." Dr. Borawski's co-author was David Bruckman, MS, PhD candidate in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the School of Medicine and core faculty, PRCHN of Case Western Reserve University. He also serves as the biostatistician for the City of Cleveland Department of Public Health.

This new research reveals trends and differences by neighborhood group, age, race and sex among Cleveland adults. The local survey data comes from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) collected from 2005 through 2009.

"These very compelling data briefs illuminate the impact of race and place on health disparities related to the burden of diabetes, hypertension and obesity in Greater Cleveland," says Terry Allan, MPH, health commissioner, Cuyahoga County Board of Health. "They offer the opportunity to focus increasingly precious resources on community programs and academic research initiatives to reduce this unacceptable gap."

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