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Revista de Saúde Pública

Print version ISSN 0034-8910On-line version ISSN 1518-8787


CHIESA, Anna Maria; WESTPHAL, Márcia Faria  and  KASHIWAGI, Néa Miwa. Geoprocessing and health promotion: social and environmental inequalities, Brazil. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2002, vol.36, n.5, pp.559-567. ISSN 0034-8910.

OBJECTIVE: To characterize social inequalities that represent risk conditions for respiratory tract diseases in children and to describe geoprocessing techniques to identify homogeneous social groups and intervention actions for health promotion. METHODS: The study area comprised the surroundings of a health school center in the city of São Paulo. Based on 1991 census, housing data on 49 census units in the study area were statistically analyzed and it was obtained the mean of characteristic social and environment variables in these units. Together with local representatives, variables were selected that made up composite indicators related to social insertion and housing quality to allow identifying different conditions of potential exposure to respiratory tract diseases. Using geoprocessing techniques, four homogeneous groups were identified in terms of potential exposure to risk conditions for respiratory diseases. RESULTS: It was obtained a spatial configuration of the groups reflecting different needs in the study area. The methodological instruments used revealed to be important for the development of local actions to be implemented in services that operate in specific geographical areas. CONCLUSIONS: The study contributed to the identification of risk conditions in the health center area, making it possible the joint and inter-sector discussion of conditions related to respiratory tract diseases in children, aiming at promoting equity and improving child health.

Keywords : Geoprocessing; Composite indicators; Geographic data in health; Health status indicators; Equity; Respiratory tract diseases; Health promotion; Social inequity; Risk factors; Spatial configuration.

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