The Community Need Index (2006 Edition) Report Series
What is the CNI?
HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, affects every community in New York but impacts some localities more than others. Accordingly, the need for HIV/AIDS-related health care and prevention services may vary across neighborhoods. The CNI was created to identify spatial variation in the presence of HIV/AIDS and related risk behaviors and to facilitate comparative assessment among local communities at the ZIP code level.
Interpreting the CNI
In this report series, every ZIP code that has an identifiable geographic boundary is treated as a representation of a local community. Nine health statistics associated with each ZIP code are used as indicators of service need. The indicators are analyzed and combined into a single CNI score for each ZIP code. The ZIP codes are then rank-ordered from high to low based on their CNI scores. The top 20% of the ZIP codes (80th percentile and above) are classified as high need communities (H); the next 20% of the ZIP codes are classified moderate need communities (M); and the remaining 60% are considered as low need communities (L). It should be noted that different locations within a ZIP code may not exhibit the same level of need as measured by its CNI score. Some ZIP codes cover large areas that may include residential as well as non-residential areas such as parks and other public works.
Comparing the CNI Across Geographic Areas
To facilitate meaningful comparisons of HIV/AIDS-related service needs in local communities within different geographic regions (i.e. urban vs. rural; metropolitan areas vs. small towns; etc.), the CNI scores are computed separately for ZIP codes in each of the three statistical areas: New York City (NYC); New York City Vicinity (NYV); and Rest of State (ROS). It is important to note that CNI scores can be used to compare relative need of two or more ZIP codes within the same CNI statistical area. However, the CNI scores for ZIP codes from two different statistical areas (e.g. one ZIP code from NY and the other from NYV) should not be compared directly, since the respective CNI scores are computed based on different sets of statistical parameters unique to each CNI statistical area.
The CNI has two important features as a comparative assessment tool. First, the computation of the index is based on a statistical model that combines nine health statistical rates into a single scoring system. It is a composite measure that takes into consideration the multiple sources of HIV/AIDS-related risk. Second, it is a geographic information system (GIS)-based measure that allows spatial analysis of risk. Users of the CNI can identify high need communities using thematic maps and examine their spatial distribution. Together with information about other community characteristics, the CNI can help service providers plan and address the specific needs of the people residing in their services areas.
- About the CNI (2006 Edition)
- Description of Statistical Indicators
- New Features and Enhancements
- Limitations of the CNI
- Download Regional Reports