Vol. 24, No. 3/4, Fall-Winter 1986 - "Medical Geography"



A GEOGRAPHY OF HEART DISEASE IN PENNSYLVANIA: 1980-1984

(pp. 1 – 11)


Robert C. Ziegenfus and Glenn Price

Kutztown University


Abstract


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Pennsylvania. In 1984, the latest year for which official statistics are available, there were 48,645 deaths from heart disease. This number constitutes slightly more than 40% of all deaths in the state. Yet, neither the historically high rates nor the possibility of distinct spatial patterns has stimulated any literature on the geographical variation in heart disease throughout the Commonwealth. It is true that two studies that have examined portions of Pennsylvania found some elevated rates in certain places. A few maps of heart disease for each county of the U. S. appeared in an article by Fabsitz and Feinleib. But none of these involved a focus exclusively on Pennsylvania's heart disease patterns. The purpose of this paper is to make a contribution toward that end.




A GEOGRAPHY OF CANCER IN PENNSYLVANIA: 1980-1984

(pp. 12 – 23)


Robert C. Ziegenfus

Kutztown University


Abstract


This article is the second in a series of projected papers that will examine Pennsylvania's cancer mortality rates. The first appeared in this journal two years ago, and it should be referenced by those who wish to have a general overview. Suffice it to say here that the trends mentioned in the previous article have continued. One in particular deserves to be updated: while cancer is the second leading cause of death in the state, accounting for approximately 23% of all deaths in 1984, it was the leading cause of death for females ages 25-64 during the period 1980-1984. The purpose of this paper is to provide a description of the geographic patterns of different cancers for this time period for males and females.




PHYSICIAN ORGANIZATION, LOCATION AND ACCESS IN NORTHWEST PENNSYLVANIA

(pp. 24 – 30)


Lydle Brinkle

Gannon University


Abstract


The study of geographical perspectives on health care generally forms a major focus of the well-established subject of medical geography. Medical geography may be defined as "the application of geographical concepts and techniques to healthrelated problems." Physicians, including medical services, are among the most important social resources in terms of location and accessibility. Important concerns of this paper are the spatial incidence of physicians in Northwest Pennsylvania, factors attributing to intra regional disparities of physician availability, and the effects which various social and economic factors have on the process of availability and utilization. Geographical methodologies are employed to ascertain the extent to which the 11 counties of Northwest Pennsylvania are more or less favored in physician availability and accessibility compared to one another.



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