Using a database of calls to CAPHIS, the US Census data from 2000, socioeconomic data from the US Census ACS of 2005-2009, and the map making technology of ArcMap, the Preston Medical Library was able to create a map that showed the frequency of calls into CAPHIS in the state of Tennessee. They first began by organizing the number of calls into CAPHIS, by zip code, between June 30, 2009, and July 1, 2011. They then downloaded a map of the counties of Tennessee, and plotted the zip codes onto this map. The socioeconomic data for age, poverty, and disability was then added, to the map.
The image above is one of 6 maps created to show the correlation between calls into CAPHIS, and socioeconomic factors. This particular map shows the rate of calls into CAPHIS, and the rate of disabilities within Tennessee counties. What is shown in this map, and the others not pictured, is that in many counties, fewer calls into CAPHIS have some sort of correlation with socioeconomic factors such as age, poverty, and, in this case, disabilities.
After analyzing each of the maps, it was determined by the Preston Medical Library that a total of 31 zip codes in 14 counties within East Tennessee had not met their health information needs, and therefore were prime locations for more health outreach from local libraries. After completing this research, Preston Medical Library made plans to continue collecting information on the rate of calls coming into CAPHIS, and what, if any, effect the outreach efforts had on the number of calls. They then plan to create new maps that show the change over time of the rate of calls in Tennessee.
Socha, Y. M., Oelschlegel, S., Vaughn, C. J., & Earl, M. (2012). Improving an outreach service by analyzing the relationship of health information disparities to socioeconomic indicators using geographic information systems. Journal of the Medical Library Association.