Income Inequality and Infant Mortality in New York City

Nancy L. Sohler, Peter S. Arno, Chee Jen Chang, Jing Fang, Clyde B. Schechter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A series of studies have demonstrated that people who live in regions where there are disparities in income have poorer average health status than people who live in more economically homogeneous regions. To test whether such disparities might explain health variations within urban areas, we examined the possible association between income inequality and infant mortality for zip code regions within New York City using data from the 1990 census and the New York City Department of Health. Both infant mortality and income inequality (percentage of income received by the poorest 50% of households) varied widely across these regions (range in infant mortality: 0.6-29.6/1,000 live births; range in income inequality: 12.7-27.3). An increase of one standard deviation in income inequality was associated with an increase of 0.80 deaths/1,000 live births (P < .001), controlling for other socioeconomic factors. This finding has important implications for public health practice and social epidemiological research in large urban areas, which face significant disparities both in health and in social and economic conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)650-657
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Urban Health
Volume80
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2003

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Infant Mortality
infant mortality
income
Live Birth
Health
urban area
Public Health Practice
health
Social Conditions
Censuses
socioeconomic factors
Health Status
social research
health status
Economics
census
public health
death
Research
economics

Keywords

  • Income inequality
  • Infant mortality
  • New York City
  • SES

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

Income Inequality and Infant Mortality in New York City. / Sohler, Nancy L.; Arno, Peter S.; Chang, Chee Jen; Fang, Jing; Schechter, Clyde B.

In: Journal of Urban Health, Vol. 80, No. 4, 12.2003, p. 650-657.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Sohler, Nancy L. ; Arno, Peter S. ; Chang, Chee Jen ; Fang, Jing ; Schechter, Clyde B. / Income Inequality and Infant Mortality in New York City. In: Journal of Urban Health. 2003 ; Vol. 80, No. 4. pp. 650-657.
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