Place, Space, and Health: GIS and Epidemiology

Nancy Krieger
Place. Area. Neighborhood. Latitude. Longitude. Distance. These geographic terms are increasingly finding their way into the epidemiologic literature, as advances in geographic information system (GIS) technology make it ever easier to connect spatially referenced physical and social phenomena to population patterns of health, disease, and well-being.1-3 Indeed, links between location and health have long captured the imagination of perceptive observers. Consider the Hippocratic treatise, “Airs, Waters, and Places,” written about 2,400 years ago, which roundly...
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