Reassessing the Stroke Belt: Using Small Area Spatial Statistics to Identify Clusters of High Stroke Mortality in the United States

Stroke, 1 July 2016

Background and Purpose—The stroke belt is described as an 8-state region with high stroke mortality across the southeastern United States. Using spatial statistics, we identified clusters of high stroke mortality (hot spots) and adjacent areas of low stroke mortality (cool spots) for US counties and evaluated for regional differences in county-level risk factors. ₀

Conclusions—Clusters of high stroke mortality exist beyond the 8-state stroke belt, and variation exists within the stroke belt. Reconsideration of the stroke belt definition and increased attention to local determinants of health underlying small area regional variability could inform targeted healthcare interventions. Read more.

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