Epidemiology is the study of the distribution and determinants of diseases in human populations, as defined by the CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The determinants being things such as factors that precipitate the disease, atmospheric pollution, lifestyle and cholesterol level.
Epidemiological indicators serve , for example, to express the relationship between the subset of patients and the total number of individuals in the population, which is equivalent to a simplified calculation of risk. For example, if the prevalence of flu in Spain is 200 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, we could say that the chances of suffering from it are 0.2%.
Health authorities manage a wide variety of epidemiological indicators in public health.
There are two measures of incidence risk and rate
Number of people affected by a specific pathology. A case could be hospitaliz patients or deaths. This indicator can be:
Discrete present or absent: for example, a person has the phone lists free flu or they don’t, there is no middle ground
Continuous: for health conditions that allow a graduation. For example, blood pressure or cholesterol.
Risk: Risk is the probability of a new onset of disease among individuals in an initially disease-free population over a defin period of time. It is calculat by dividing the number of new cases in the defined period by the population at risk at the beginning of the period.
Rate: The rate is a measure of the frequency of occurrence of new cases, a measure that takes into account changes in the size of the population at risk during the follow-up period.
The mortality rate is a measure of the number
Prevalence is the proportion of individuals in a defined population who suffer from the disease under study at a defined instant in time. Its range is between 0 and 1-0% -100%.
deaths in general, or due to a specific cause in some population, scaled to the size of that population, per unit of time. The mortality rate is usually expressed in units of deaths per 1000 individuals per year.
There are several types such as maternal, infant, age-specific, perinatal mortality rates.
Associated with mortality there is also talk of:
Survival rate: The proportion of survivors in a specific group, usually patients with a disease, who survived in a specific period of time.
Case fatality rate: proportion of cases in a Book Your List designated population of a particular disease, who die within a specified period of time.
If you liked this post, we invite you to learn about the main health indicators in Spain.