Tuesday, 24 January 2012: 2:00 PM
Linking NASA Environmental Data with a National Public Health Cohort Study and a CDC on-Line System to Enhance Public Health Decision Making
Room 333 (New Orleans Convention Center )
The overall goal of this NASA-funded study is to address issues of environmental health and enhance public health decision making by utilizing NASA remotely-sensed data and products. This study is a collaboration between NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Universities Space Research Association (USRA), the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Public Health Informatics. The objectives of this study are to develop high-quality spatial data sets of environmental variables, link these with public health data from a national cohort study, and deliver the linked data sets and associated analyses to local, state and federal end-user groups. Three daily environmental data sets were developed for the conterminous U.S. on different spatial resolutions for the period 2003-2008: (1) spatial surfaces of estimated fine particulate matter (PM2.5) exposures on a 10-km grid utilizing the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ground observations and NASA's MODerate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data; (2) a 1-km grid of Land Surface Temperature (LST) using MODIS data; and (3) a 12-km grid of daily Solar Insolation (SI) and maximum and minimum air temperature using the North American Land Data Assimilation System (NLDAS) forcing data. In order to determine whether exposures to these environmental risk factors are related to cognitive decline and other health outcomes, these environmental datasets were linked with public health data from the UAB REasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) national cohort study funded by the NIH National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. These environmental national datasets will also be made available to public health professionals, researchers and the general public via the CDC Wide-ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research (WONDER) system, where they can be aggregated to the county, state or regional level as per users' need and downloaded in tabular, graphical, and map formats. The linkage of these data provides a useful addition to CDC WONDER, allowing public health researchers and policy makers to better include environmental exposure data in the context of other health data available in this online system. It also substantially expands public access to NASA data, making their use by a wide range of decision makers feasible.