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Demographic risk factors for injury among Hispanic and non-Hispanic white children: an ecologic analysis
  1. Craig L Anderson1,
  2. Phyllis F Agran2,
  3. Diane G Winn1,
  4. Cecile Tran1
  1. 1Pediatric Injury Prevention Research Group, Health Policy and Research, University of California, Irvine, USA
  2. 2Department Of Pediatrics and Pediatric Injury Prevention Research Group, Health Policy and Research, University of California, Irvine, USA
  1. Correspondence and requests for reprints to: Dr Craig L Anderson, Health Policy and Research, University of California, Irvine, 3255 Berkeley Place, Irvine, CA 92697–5800, USA.


Objectives—To determine the effects of neighborhood levels of poverty, household crowding, and acculturation on the rate of injury to Hispanic and non-Hispanic white children.

Setting—Orange County, California.

Methods—An ecologic study design was used with census block groups as the unit of analysis. Measures of neighborhood poverty, household crowding, and acculturation were specific to each ethnic group. Poisson regression was used to calculate mutually adjusted incidence rate ratios (IRRs) corresponding to a 20% difference in census variables.

Results—Among non-Hispanic white children, injury rates were more closely associated with neighborhood levels of household crowding (adjusted IRR 2.36, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.22 to 4.57) than with neighborhood poverty (adjusted IRR 1.06, 95% CI 0.89 to 1.26). For Hispanic children, the strongest risk factors were the proportion of Hispanic adults who spoke only some English (compared with the proportion who spoke little or no English, adjusted IRR 1.26, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.53) and the proportion who were US residents for <5 years (adjusted IRR 1.20, 95% CI 1.001 to 1.43). Neighborhood levels of household crowding were not related to injury among Hispanic children (adjusted IRR 0.98, 95% CI 0.89 to 1.08), but surprisingly, neighborhood poverty was associated with lower injury rates (adjusted IRR 0.89, 95% CI 0.81 to 0.97).

Conclusions—Cultural and geographic transitions, as well as socioeconomic differences, appear to contribute to differences in childhood injury rates between ethnic groups.

  • Hispanic Americans
  • socioeconomic factors
  • crowding
  • acculturation

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