Measuring Health Disparities
John W. Lynch, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.Ed. Sam Harper, Ph.D.
McGill University, and produced by the Michigan Public Health Training Center (MPHTC)
Center for Social Epidemiology and Population Health, and
This interactive course focuses on some basic issues for public health practice -- how to understand, define and measure health disparity. This course examines the language of health disparity to come to some common understanding of what that term means, explains key measures of health disparity and shows how to calculate them. This computer-based course provides a durable tool that is useful to daily activities in the practice of public health.
The material is divided into four content sections.
Parts I and II review what health disparities are, how they are defined, and provide an overview of common issues faced in measuring health disparities.
Parts III and IV introduce users to a range of health disparity measures, providing advantages and disadvantages of each, and discuss how best to use different measures to communicate and evaluate health disparity in our communities.
By the end of the first content section (which includes Part I What are Health Disparities? and Part II Issues in Measuring Health Disparities), you will be able to:
· Identify the dimensions of health disparity as described in Healthy People 2010
· List three definitions of health disparity
· Interpret health disparity in graphical representations of data
· Explain relative and absolute disparity
· Describe how reference groups can affect disparity measurement
By the end of the second content section (which includes Part III Measures of Health Disparities and Part IV Analytic Steps in Measuring Health Disparity), you will be able to:
· Describe at least three complex measures of health disparities
· List strengths and weaknesses of at least three health disparity measures
· Summarize the analytic steps in measuring health disparity
This course, while self-paced, can be expected to take between two to three hours to complete. The various health disparity measures are explained with interactive slides and audio commentary. Real-world examples illustrate concepts and carefully thought-out exercises help build knowledge.
The CD-ROM is designed to be accessible to a broad audience of practitioners across all sectors of the public health and related workforce who are concerned about the issue of health disparity. Parts III and IV are more technical; although not required, it is helpful to have a background in statistics, epidemiology, or other related sciences for ease of understanding these sections.
Continuing Education Credit and Completion Certificate
For continuing education credit or completion certificate, you may complete the entire course or the first two parts (Parts I & II). Certificates are awarded upon submission of an evaluation and successful completion of the relevant tests. (There is a post-test covering Parts I & II and another covering Parts III & IV.) The computer-based course contains a link to the evaluation and post-tests, which are online.
Parts I & II provide 1.5 Contact hours in Nursing, 1.5 credits for social work continuing education, or 1.0 Contact hours for CHES; the entire course (Parts I-IV) provides 3.3 Contact hours in Nursing, 3.3 credits for social work continuing education, or 3.0 Contact hours for CHES. Additional information about social work, nursing and CHES continuing education provisions is available on the Career Advancement page of our website.
This course has been classified as "knowledgeable" by the criteria of the Council on Linkages Between Academia and Public Health Practice, based on depth of material covered and length of course.
This course has been made possible through funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Michigan Public Health Training Center, Center for Social Epidemiology and Population Health, and Prevention Research Center of Michigan.
Downloadable computer file You can download the course immediately and then install it on your hard drive. The course is password-protected.
· To download computer file, click here. File size is 68.2 MB and will take about five minutes to download with a high-speed bandwidth.
· To obtain course password, click here. (There is a link to obtain the password, once you begin the computer-based course.)
· Installation instructions. This computer-based course is PC-based and not Macintosh-compatible.
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