Uses of Spatial Analysis in Oral Health Research
Spatial analysis provides an innovative decision- support tool in health informatics with a substantial potential to harness in oral epidemiology, planning, monitoring and evaluation of public health care services such as dental care. In this context the application of innovative technologies promote the use of available tools that enhance the design of the health sector based on a spatial approach. This scenario involves the appropriation of available technologies and strategies that strengthen differentiated and modern management with the focus on making health decision. Mapping and spatial analysis in oral health conditions couple with population characteristics becomes important in this context. The aim of this study, besides presenting the uses of spatial analysis in oral health, is to discuss some representative applications of methods that deal with the analysis of spatial patterns of oral health events, analyzing advantages, disadvantages, and applicability of the spatial analysis in oral health status and planning.