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Title:Race differences in infant mortality
Author(s):Owens, Linda Kay
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Choldin, Harvey
Department / Program:Sociology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Health Sciences, Public Health
Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies
Sociology, Demography
Abstract:Based on a sample of 57,645 birth and death certificates, this study examines infant mortality in Illinois among the 1985-1988 white and African American live birth cohorts. The primary focus is on race differences in the effects of maternal age, education, marital status, and prenatal care on the probability of an infant death and the likelihood of death due to a specific cause. Prenatal care and birthweight are included as intervening variables. A two part analysis is employed. The first part utilizes logistic regression to determine the extent of race differences in the probability of an infant death. The second part utilizes multinomial logistic regression to determine the extent of race differences in the likelihood of dying from a specific cause compared to a reference category (congenital malformations). The results reveal a number of differences in both the presence of significant effects of the variables of interest as well as in the direction and magnitude of the effects, with a greater number of race differences evident in the first part of the analysis. Differences in the effects of the mother's age on birthweight and the likelihood of an infant death are the most striking. Among Whites, the relationship between maternal age and birthweight and the relationship between maternal age and infant mortality are both curvilinear, with infants born to mothers in their early twenties having the highest birthweights, and infants born to mothers in their late twenties having the highest probabilities of survival. Among African Americans, the effects of maternal age on birthweight are linear, with infants born to teenagers having the highest birthweights. The effects of maternal age on infant mortality are insignificant. The study concludes with a discussion of the implications of these and other findings for policy and future research.
Issue Date:1995
Rights Information:Copyright 1995 Owens, Linda Kay
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9624454
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9624454

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