SPH exterior

Useful Links:

9th Annual GIS Day and Workshops 2013

GIS and Public Health Surveillance
(Geographic Information Systems)

April 30, 2013
9:00am - 4:30pm

9th Annual GIS Day and Workshop 2013: GIS and Public Health Surveillance will be a one day event, with presentations in the morning, followed by hands-on workshops in the afternoon.

Registration Fee $35.00 - pay by check or credit card - directions will come in your registration confirmation e-mail.
Student - $10.00
includes continental breakfast and a lunch
Certificates of completion will also be made available.

Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) and Toolkit
Barry Flanagan, PhD, Geography & Elaine J. Hallisey, MA Geography
Geospatial Research, Analysis, & Services Program (GRASP)
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry

About the Presentation: Social vulnerability refers to the socioeconomic factors that affect the resilience of communities. The socially vulnerable are more likely to die in a disaster event and less likely to recover after one. Geospatial Research, Analysis, & Services Program (GRASP) developed a Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) to help state partners identify the locations of their most vulnerable populations. This talk describes how the SVI was created and the components of the SVI Toolkit. The presenters will:

  • Discuss background and rationale for the creation of the 2000 and 2010 versions of the Social Vulnerability Index (SVI)
  • Describe data and methods used to create the index, including challenges using American Community Survey Data
  • Describe components of the SVI Toolkit, particularly the new ACS Toolbox, and
  • Discuss forthcoming SVI Website and Interactive Mapping Application.

GIS in Emergency Response: Sandy and Beyond
Presenter: Frank Winters, GIS Manager, NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, Office of Information Technology Services

Geographic Information System (GIS) technology has played an ever increasing role in emergency response and recovery.  Hurricane Sandy was no exception.  The Office of Cyber Security GIS Unit (now of the Office of Information Technology Services GIS Program Office) along with GIS staff from several state agencies were deployed to Nassau County, Breezy Point, Manhattan, and the State Office of Emergency Management.  As the flood waters receded, the GIS efforts follow in support of the Governor’s 2100 Commission.  This presentation will highlight tactical products used in response as well as analytical products used by policy makers deliberating future directions.

Storm Surge - Use of GIS in Hurricane Evacuation Planning & Evacuation Decision-Making
Presenter: Dan O’Brien, Program Manager, New York State Office of Emergency Management

The overriding concern of hurricane preparedness is the safe evacuation of threatened coastal populations before the arrival of dangerous storm conditions. Emergency management efforts are focused on having a good evacuation plan in place and decision support relative to if, when, and what zone to evacuate as a storm approaches. An overview of the evacuation planning process as reflected in the Hurricane Evacuation Study is presented as well as decision support tools utilized in evacuation decisions. GIS plays an important role in each of these areas as well as in future plans of the National Hurricane Center for storm surge warnings and detailed storm surge inundation maps.

SaTScan and a Space-Time Permutation Scan Statistic for the Detection of Gastrointestinal Disease Outbreaks
Presenter: Martin Kulldorf, Professor, Department of Population Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute

Using reportable disease data or electronic health records, the prospective space-time permutation scan statistics and the free SaTScan software can be used for disease outbreak detection.  Importantly, it automatically adjust for any purely spatial and any purely temporal variation of the disease counts, as well as for the multiple testing inherent in the many potential outbreak location and sizes evaluated. After describing the method, it is illustrated for foodborne disease outbreak detection using 22 different types of data from Kaiser Permanente Northern California.
Likely disease outbreaks detected included a Salmonella cluster with five cases of the same rare serotype.


Detecting Clusters of Adverse Health Outcomes using SaTScan
Thomas Talbot
Chief, of Environmental Public Health Surveillance Section
New York State Department of Health

Length: 90 minutes (1 session offered)

This workshop will introduce participants to SaTScan™ software (http://www.satscan.org). SaTScan™ is free and has been widely used to perform geographical surveillance of a variety of adverse health outcomes by detecting spatial and space-time clusters and assessing the statistical significance. Participants will learn the statistical principles behind the method, how to properly format their data, and how to display the results in a GIS or a Google map. The hands on training will use examples from the recently released block-group level cancer incidence data from New York State. Participants will need to bring their Laptop computer to the training.  The software, sample data sets and training materials will be provided at the workshop. Participants are also encouraged to bring their own data sets

Indiemapper: a simple and free web tool for creating thematic maps
Frank Boscoe, Associate Research Professor with the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics who has been teaching GIS to public health students for over 10 years.

Length: 75 minutes (2 sessions offered)

Indiemapper (www.indiemapper.com) is a free web-based tool for creating thematic maps. Traditionally this task has required costly software and/or programming expertise. Indiemapper removes these barriers for anyone wishing to map their data. This workshop will also cover the use of Inkscape, a free drawing program, that is good for making final touch-ups that are beyond the capabilities of Indiemapper.

Creating Maps with PROC GMAP
Mike Zdeb, University at Albany, School of Public Health

Length: 90 minutes (2 sessions offered)

You can create maps with SAS by using PROC GMAP, one of the procedures available within SAS/GRAPH. Like other SAS procedures, PROC GMAP can be used on a number of levels. At a beginning level, you can produce a number of different types of maps using very little SAS code and no procedure options. At a more advanced level, you can create maps with labeled areas and hyperlinks to other information.

This course starts with basic topics: the data needed to create maps, the various types of maps that can be produced, and some other SAS/GRAPH procedures that complement PROC GMAP. These basics will rely on using procedure options to control the appearance of maps. Once you understand map basics, the course will move onto map customization using the annotate facility. Map annotation is a powerful tool that allows a great deal of flexibility in map appearance, but once again the basics will be covered first before moving onto one or two more complex examples. Example will include adding popup information that appears as you scroll across map areas and adding hyperlinks that allow you drill-down to additional information when you click on map area or symbol.

The final portion of the class will demonstrate the use of some of the newer map-related procedures. You will learn how to use PROC MAPIMPORT to create map data sets from shapefiles, how to use PROC GEOCODE to add latitude and longitude your data sets, and given you know latitude and longitude how to use PROC GINSIDE to determine what geographic area (for example, census tract) contains that location. You will also learn how to use SAS to create a KML file that allows you to display your data in a Google map. Last , you will also see how you can use SAS in combination with Google maps to determine driving distances and driving times between various locations. At various points throughout the class, some map-related macros and functions will also be used and discussed.

Though there are a lot of topics to cover in one afternoon, you will learn to enough create maps on your own with PROC GMAP and how to, at a minimum, add area labels and symbols showing locations of cities. And remember, the course comes with a "lifetime warranty".

INTENDED AUDIENCE: Can range from those with no knowledge of using any SAS/Graph procedures to those who have already tried to create maps but might not have ventured to using map annotation.

Empire State PHTC logo

NYS Department of Health logo