Spatial Epidemiology and Statistics Lab

Spatial epidemiology is a rapidly advancing field, increasing our capacity to illuminate environmental, social and structural factors to improve population health.

The Spatial Epidemiology and Statistics Lab is affiliated with the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and West Virginia Clinical and Translational Science Institute (WVCTSI).

Spatial epidemiology is a sub-field within epidemiology focused on the study of the geographic context of disease and distribution of social determinants of health. The practice of spatial epidemiology involves the combination of rigorous epidemiological and biostatistical methods to illuminate environmental, social and structural factors which improve or adversely impact population health.

Brian Hendricks presenting results from a local cluster analysis
Pictured is a satellite image of a study area and a cluster of overdoses identified. When paired with satellite imagery, researchers can look inside clusters to see how many doctors, hospitals, grocery stores, etc. are within a community and generate new ideas about risk based on the community's access to services (medical or otherwise).

Laboratory Objectives

Our lab group has three primary objectives:

  • Adapt existing or develop new spatial methods which highlight health inequities.
  • Train and advise the next generation of public health scholars.
  • Translate findings into actionable public health solutions and disseminate research.

Faculty within the lab have diverse interests with publications and research expertise in infectious diseases, chronic disease, environmental epidemiology, traffic safety and substance abuse epidemiology. Additionally, we are affiliated with or have strong collaborations with the WV Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute, CDC NIOSH, WVU Medicine Cancer Institute, WVU Medicine Heart and Vascular Institute, WVU Office of Health Affairs, and West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. These partnerships provide opportunities to support innovative student training experiences at the WVU School of Public Health.

Lab Personnel

Researchers

Brian Hendricks’s photo.

Assistant Professor
West Virginia University
Caroline Groth’s photo.

Assistant Professor
West Virginia University
Sijin Wen’s photo.

Associate Professor
West Virginia University
Toni Rudisill’s photo.

Research Assistant Professor
West Virginia University
UNC Charlotte’s logo.

Associate Professor
UNC Charlotte
West Virginia University’s logo.

Associate Professor of Geography
West Virginia University

Students

West Virginia University’s logo.

Olayemi Adeniran

PhD Student, Focus: Cardiovascular Disease
West Virginia University
West Virginia University’s logo.

Jeffrey Persarsick

PhD Student, Focus: Paramedicine
West Virginia University
West Virginia University’s logo.

Folawiyo Olanrewaju

PhD Student, Focus: Infectious Disease
West Virginia University
Clemson University’s logo.

Brian Witrick

PhD Student, Focus: Cardiovascular Disease
Clemson University
West Virginia University’s logo.

Cassie Smith

MPH Student
West Virginia University
West Virginia University’s logo.

Kamila Duff

MPH Student
West Virginia University