Putting Disease on the Map

Esri Book Offers a Sweeping Historical Overview of Medical Mapping in a New, Expanded Edition of Cartographies of Disease: Maps, Mapping, and Medicine

Redlands, California—January 31, 2017 — The new edition of  Cartographies of Disease: Maps, Mapping, and Medicine from Esri traces the long history of how maps have been used to help unlock the mysteries behind the cause and spread of diseases such as cholera, yellow fever, and Ebola.

Cartographies of Disease was first published in 2005 and showed how maps could be used as an important tool for studying both chronic conditions and disease epidemics. It became a must read for policy makers and others working in public health and medicine.

In this expanded edition, author Dr. Tom Koch adds new material to deepen readers' understanding of medical mapping from the seventeenth into the twenty-first centuries. The book covers the mapping of diseases and medical conditions such as cholera, yellow fever, typhoid fever, sandfly fever, hernia, lymphoma, arteriosclerotic heart disease, cancer, influenza, AIDS, West Nile virus, and Ebola.

"Cartographies of Disease is a book about our confrontations with bacterial and viral agents across history," Koch wrote in the book's introduction. "It is also about how maps help us profile those conditions in our attempts to restrict them. Ebola in 2014 reminded us that it's urgent to understand the conditions that promote disease and the ways we confront them on the ground."

The book provides a nontechnical narrative and a visual history of mapping's role in studying what causes disease, understanding where and how diseases spread, and how they can be combated. The illustrations include more than 100 maps and charts, from a pair of 1694 maps of plague locations and containment zones in Bari, Italy, to digital maps of the 2014 Ebola outbreak, created using geographic information system (GIS) technology.

Ebola is the focus of the two new chapters. In chapter 13, the international perception of Ebola's threat is charted and, with it, the fear engendered by the possibility that a local outbreak might become an international pandemic. Perceptions of the disease and reactions to it are mapped using contemporary technologies such as GIS.

Chapter 14 is devoted to the practical issues of mapping an infectious virus like Ebola in developing countries. It describes how the potential for Ebola to spread was initially overlooked and how, in the future, new epidemics might be better contained. Mapping, Koch argues, can help identify disease threats, direct medical assistance when necessary, and educate people—locally and internationally—about new diseases.

Koch is a medical ethicist and gerontologist based in Canada. As an adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, he developed a series of teaching labs for medical geography.

Cartographies of Disease: Maps, Mapping, and Medicine, new expanded edition, is now available in print (ISBN: 9781589484672, 412 pages, US$79.99) or as an e-book (ISBN: 9781589484764, 412 pages, US$59.99). The print edition of the book can be obtained from online retailers worldwide, at  esri.com/esripress, or by calling  1-800-447-9778. The e-book edition is available for purchase from online retailers. Outside the United States, visit  esri.com/esripressorders for complete ordering options, or visit esri.com/distributors to contact your local Esri distributor. Interested retailers can contact Esri Press book distributor Ingram Publisher Services.

Since 1969, Esri has been giving customers around the world the power to think and plan geographically. The market leader in GIS, Esri software is used in more than 350,000 organizations worldwide including each of the 200 largest cities in the United States, most national governments, more than two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies, and more than 7,000 colleges and universities. Esri applications, running on more than one million desktops and thousands of Web and enterprise servers, provide the backbone for the world's mapping and spatial analysis. Esri is the only vendor that provides complete technical solutions for desktop, mobile, server, and Internet platforms. Visit us at  www.esri.com.

 


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Karen Richardson, Esri
Tel.: 909-793-2853, extension 1-3491
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