The growing evidence of neighborhood influences on health points to the need for investigation of health-relevant features of local environments. This study examines one potentially health-enhancing neighborhood resource, urban parks, to test for systematic differences in material conditions between areas. Twenty-eight parks selected from six urban Montreal neighborhoods along a health status gradient are qualitatively assessed. While neighborhood parks showed a variety of feature quality ratings, those located in poor health areas displayed several pronounced material disadvantages, including concentration of physical incivilities, limited provision of facilities for physical exercise, and adjacency to industrial sites and multi-lane roads. Equalizing park quality between areas may be an important step for public health promotion.
A community research model developed in the United Kingdom was adopted in a multi-country study of health in diverse neighbourhoods in European cities, including Sweden. This paper describes the challenges and opportunities of using this model in Sweden.
In Sweden, five community researchers were recruited and trained to facilitate access to diverse groups in the two study neighbourhoods, including ethnic, religious, and linguistic minorities. Community researchers recruited participants from the neighbourhoods, and assisted during semi-structured interviews. Their local networks, and knowledge were invaluable for contextualising the study and finding participants. Various factors made it difficult to fully apply the model in Sweden. The study took place when an unprecedented number of asylum-seekers were arriving in Sweden, and potential collaborators' time was taken up in meeting their needs. Employment on short-term, temporary contracts is difficult since Swedish Universities are public authorities. Strong expectations of stable full-time employment, make flexible part-time work undesirable. The community research model was only partly successful in embedding the research project as a collaboration between community members and the University. While there was interest and some involvement from neighbourhood residents, the research remained University-led with a limited sense of community ownership.
This article considers measures that indicate the degree of regionalization within a hospital system. In particular, regional independence is characterized with a "self-sufficiency" index. The basis of these measures is the use of facilities in one region by residents of another region, that is, interregional flows. Examples of the use of the suggested measure in the Nova Scotia hospital system are presented.
Cites: Health Serv Res. 1975 Winter;10(4):333-481241782