Using Spatial Analysis to Improve Health Care Services and Delivery at Baystate Health

Journal of Map & Geography LibrariesJournal of Map & Geography Libraries, Volume 7, Issue 3, 2011

Jane L. Garb and Richard B. Wait

“Baystate Health has been recognized by the industry for its innovative and wide-ranging use of geographic information systems (GISs) to address problems in health. Spatial analysis is a key component in the effective use of GISs in health care for data exploration, hypothesis testing, and modeling. This paper describes GIS applications by the Health Geographics Program at Baystate Health.

Flow of youth violence and police sectors in Springfield, MA. Arrow width indicates volume of flow.

Flow of youth violence and police sectors in Springfield, MA. Arrow width indicates volume of flow.

“These applications include direct patient care, epidemiologic research, disease prevention and intervention, strategic planning, and marketing. We directed particular attention to the spatial analytic methods used in these applications. Finally, the challenges faced in obtaining and using health data for our analysis are discussed.”