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Close to Home: The Use of an Area-Based Socioeconomic Measure as an Indicator of Chlamydia Risk in Virginia

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Author: Salino, Sarah Eileen
Advisor: Dolan, Carrie B.
Committee Members: Blouet, Brian W., 1936-; Ickes, Scott B.
Issued Date: 2012-04-24
Subjects: Poverty
Census
Geography
Public health
Chlamydia
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10288/16564
Description: This analysis utilizes area-based socioeconomic measures to characterize chlamydia cases in Virginia at the census tract level and address the lack of socioeconomic data collected through routine public health surveillance in Virginia. The researcher obtained reported cases of chlamydia infection for a five-year period (2005 -- 2009) from the Virginia Depatment of Health, census tract-level population data from Geolytics, and tract-level poverty data from the United States Census Bureau. Tracts were stratified into discrete poverty levels, age standardized incidence rates were calculated for each stratum of poverty, and 95% confidence intervals based on the gamma distribution were calculated. Risk of chlamydia infection increases relative to that of the first stratum (0 -- 4.9% impoverished) as the percent of impoverished residents in a census tract rises, peaking at 4.69x greater risk in tracts with 20 -- 100% impoverished residents. This study produces policy-relevant results that contribute to national efforts to better monitor the implications of socioeconomic equalities in the United States.
Degree: Bachelors of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies


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