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author:("koblenz, Erin")
1.  Applying Spatial Analysis Tools in Public Health: An Example Using SaTScan to Detect Geographic Targets for Colorectal Cancer Screening Interventions 
Epidemiologists are gradually incorporating spatial analysis into health-related research as geocoded cases of disease become widely available and health-focused geospatial computer applications are developed. One health-focused application of spatial analysis is cluster detection. Using cluster detection to identify geographic areas with high-risk populations and then screening those populations for disease can improve cancer control. SaTScan is a free cluster-detection software application used by epidemiologists around the world to describe spatial clusters of infectious and chronic disease, as well as disease vectors and risk factors. The objectives of this article are to describe how spatial analysis can be used in cancer control to detect geographic areas in need of colorectal cancer screening intervention, identify issues commonly encountered by SaTScan users, detail how to select the appropriate methods for using SaTScan, and explain how method selection can affect results. As an example, we used various methods to detect areas in Florida where the population is at high risk for late-stage diagnosis of colorectal cancer. We found that much of our analysis was underpowered and that no single method detected all clusters of statistical or public health significance. However, all methods detected 1 area as high risk; this area is potentially a priority area for a screening intervention. Cluster detection can be incorporated into routine public health operations, but the challenge is to identify areas in which the burden of disease can be alleviated through public health intervention. Reliance on SaTScan’s default settings does not always produce pertinent results.
doi:10.5888/pcd11.130264
PMCID: PMC3965324  PMID: 24650619
2.  Knowledge of HPV Among United States Hispanic Women: Opportunities and Challenges for Cancer Prevention 
Journal of health communication  2010;15(0 3):10.1080/10810730.2010.522695.
In the United States, Hispanic women contribute disproportionately to cervical cancer incidence and mortality. This disparity, which primarily reflects lack of access to, and underutilization of, routine Pap smear screening may improve with increased availability of vaccines to prevent Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection, the principal cause of cervical cancer. However, limited research has explored known determinants of HPV vaccine acceptability among Hispanic women. The current study examines two such determinants, HPV awareness and knowledge, using data from the 2007 Health Interview National Trends Survey (HINTS) and a cross-section of callers to the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Cancer Information Service (CIS). Study data indicate that HPV awareness was high in both samples (69.5% and 63.8% had heard of the virus) but that knowledge of the virus and its association with cervical cancer varied between the two groups of women. The CIS sample, which was more impoverished and less acculturated than their HINTS counterparts, were less able to correctly identify that HPV causes cervical cancer (67.1% vs. 78.7%) and that it is a prevalent sexually transmitted infection (STI; 66.8% vs. 70.4%). Such findings imply that future research may benefit from disaggregating data collected with Hispanics to reflect important heterogeneity in this population subgroup’s ancestries, levels of income, educational attainment, and acculturation. Failing to do so may preclude opportunity to understand, as well as to attenuate, cancer disparity.
doi:10.1080/10810730.2010.522695
PMCID: PMC3858859  PMID: 21154081
3.  HPV Knowledge and Vaccine Acceptability Among Hispanic Fathers 
The purpose of this study was to examine human papillomavirus (HPV) knowledge and vaccine acceptability in a convenience sample of immigrant Hispanic men, many of whom are parents of adolescents. Data on 189 male callers were collected from the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Information Service Spanish-language call center. Most participants were willing to vaccinate their adolescent son (87.5 %) or daughter (78.8 %) against HPV. However, among this sample, awareness of HPV was low and knowledge of key risk factors varied. These findings can help guide the development of culturally informed educational efforts aimed at increasing informed decision-making about HPV vaccination among Hispanic fathers.
doi:10.1007/s10935-013-0297-0
PMCID: PMC3801294  PMID: 23377881
Human papillomavirus (HPV); HPV vaccine acceptability; Hispanic men; HPV knowledge
4.  Burden of Human Papillomavirus among Haitian Immigrants in Miami, Florida: Community-Based Participatory Research in Action 
Journal of Oncology  2012;2012:728397.
Background. Haitian immigrant women residing in Little Haiti, a large ethnic enclave in Miami-Dade County, experience the highest cervical cancer incidence rates in South Florida. While this disparity primarily reflects lack of access to screening with cervical cytology, the burden of human papillomavirus (HPV) which causes virtually all cases of cervical cancer worldwide, varies by population and may contribute to excess rate of disease. Our study examined the prevalence of oncogenic and nononcogenic HPV types and risk factors for HPV infection in Little Haiti. Methods. As part of an ongoing community-based participatory research initiative, community health workers recruited study participants between 2007 and 2008, instructed women on self-collecting cervicovaginal specimens, and collected sociodemographic and healthcare access data. Results. Of the 242 women who contributed adequate specimens, the overall prevalence of HPV was 20.7%, with oncogenic HPV infections (13.2% of women) outnumbering nononcogenic infections (7.4%). Age-specific prevalence of oncogenic HPV was highest in women 18–30 years (38.9%) although the prevalence of oncogenic HPV does not appear to be elevated relative to the general U.S. population. The high prevalence of oncogenic types in women over 60 years may indicate a substantial number of persistent infections at high risk of progression to precancer.
doi:10.1155/2012/728397
PMCID: PMC3349262  PMID: 22619675
5.  Cervical Cancer Prevention: New Tools and Old Barriers 
Cancer  2010;116(11):2531-2542.
Cervical cancer is the second most common female tumor worldwide and its incidence is disproportionately high (>80%) in the developing world. In the U.S., where Pap tests have reduced the annual incidence to approximately 11,000 cervical cancers, more than 60% of cases occur in medically-underserved populations as part of a complex of diseases linked to poverty, race/ethnicity, and/or health disparities. Because carcinogenic human papillomavirus (HPV) infections cause virtually all cervical cancer, two new approaches for cervical cancer prevention have emerged: 1) HPV vaccination to prevent infections in younger women (≤18 years old) and 2) carcinogenic HPV detection in older women (≥30 years old). Together, HPV vaccination and testing, if used in an age-appropriate manner, have the potential to transform cervical cancer prevention particularly among underserved populations. Yet significant barriers of access, acceptability, and adoption to any cervical cancer prevention strategy remain. Without understanding and addressing these obstacles, these promising new tools for cervical cancer prevention may be futile. We share our experiences in the delivery of cervical cancer prevention strategies to U.S. populations experiencing high cervical cancer burden: African-American women in South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi; Haitian immigrant women in Miami; Hispanic women in the U.S.-Mexico Border; Sioux/Native American women in the Northern Plains; white women in the Appalachia; and Vietnamese-American women in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Our goal is to inform future research and outreach efforts to reduce the burden of cervical cancer in underserved populations.
doi:10.1002/cncr.25065
PMCID: PMC2876205  PMID: 20310056

Results 1-5 (5)