Home Health Healthcare’s Million Greenback Blocks – The Well being Care Weblog
Health - April 27, 2021

Healthcare’s Million Greenback Blocks – The Well being Care Weblog


Since I first heard about them, I’ve been fascinated, and dismayed, by the idea of “million greenback blocks.”  For these of you unfamiliar with the time period, it doesn’t check with, say, Beverly Hills,  Chicago’s Gold Coast, or Manhattan’s Hudson Yards — areas the place the rich congregate.  No, it refers to metropolis blocks for which society spends over one million {dollars} yearly to incarcerate residents of that block.

I, in fact, have to consider the healthcare parallels.

The idea dates again a few years, credited to Eric Cadora, now at Justice Mapping, and Laura Kurgan, a professor of structure at Columbia College, the place she is the Director of the Heart for Spatial Analysis (CSR).  The ability of the idea is to make use of knowledge visualization for example the issue. 

Right here, for instance, is CSR’s map of Brooklyn for jail spending:

CSR describes the findings as follows:

The maps counsel that the felony justice system has grow to be the predominant authorities establishment in these communities and that public funding on this system has resulted in vital prices to different parts of our civic infrastructure — schooling, housing, well being, and household. Prisons and jails kind the distant exostructure of many American cities at the moment.

Take into consideration that: “felony justice is the predominant authorities establishment in these communities.”  One thing is improper with that image – not theirs, however, relatively, the image of our society that it presents.

Mr. Cadora informed NPR in 2012:

Nobody had ever really sat down and gotten the house avenue tackle of everybody going into jail and jail, in addition to all of the background details about their age and their employment standing, and so on. And when you may have all that knowledge, it tells you a large number about what’s occurring on the block.

In all honesty, what we mapped was not a giant shock to individuals. However if you really collect the true knowledge … on maps, [it becomes] instantly comprehensible to individuals who didn’t see it — like legislators, metropolis council individuals, researchers.

No, not a giant shock, to not most individuals.  We all know we spend a number of cash on felony justice; we simply don’t at all times notice how we spend it.  We’ve lengthy had the doubtful distinction of locking up extra individuals – in whole and per capita – than every other nation. 

But when, as they are saying, an image is value a thousand phrases, then maybe knowledge visualization is value one million {dollars}.  Even hardened felony justice advocates should blanche at how spending is so typically concentrated in sure blocks, and will surprise if maybe there are higher methods to make use of that cash for them.

CSR has quite a lot of tasks along with their felony justice work, together with some centered on healthcare.  Earlier this yr, for instance, they created an interactive vaccine allocation map to assist information choices about allocating then-scarce COVID-19 vaccines, and late final yr their New Politics of Care challenge used an interactive map to focus on current areas of well being care wants.  They proposed a New Deal for Public Well being, with one million new group well being staff deployed across the nation primarily based on the recognized wants.  

Kim is a former emarketing exec at a serious Blues plan, editor of the late & lamented Tincture.io, and now common THCB contributor.

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