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APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

Young children's health status and health care utilization in Los Angeles County:

Amy Carroll, MPH, Dept of Community Health Sciences, UCLA School of Public Health, 16-035 Center for Health Sciences, Box 951772, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1772, 619-358-9881, amycarr@ucla.edu

BACKGROUND: A healthy childhood is essential for success and well-being later in life. This study utilizes data from the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey (L.A.FANS) to examine the health status and health care utilization of young children in Los Angeles County. L.A.FANS is innovative in utilizing a stratified sampling design to study the effects of neighborhood social conditions and family life on the growth and development of children. METHODS: Analyses were conducted with 1,086 children aged 0 to 5 years within the L.A. FANS sample. Several child health and health care utilization outcomes were explored, including: birth health status, current health status, health insurance coverage, and health care utilization. The roles of various demographic, geographic, and socioeconomic determinants of child health were also examined. RESULTS: This study found clear evidence of socioeconomic and racial/ethnic disparities in child health status in Los Angeles County. Lower household socioeconomic status and neighborhood poverty level predicted poorer outcomes. African-Americans and Latinos experienced higher rates of pre-term birth, low birth weight, poor current health status, and health condition diagnoses. Although children of immigrant mothers experienced better birth outcomes, they also had poorer health status, inadequate health insurance, and were less likely to have a regular source of care. CONCLUSIONS: Findings demonstrate that disadvantage manifests itself in poorer child health outcomes and inadequate utilization of appropriate health care services. This presentation will highlight child health areas important for program planners, advocates and policy-makers interested in serving the health needs of low-income, underserved, and vulnerable children.

Learning Objectives:

  • At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) in this session will be able to

    Keywords: Child Health, Vulnerable Populations

    Related Web page: www.lasurvey.rand.org/

    Presenting author's disclosure statement:

    Not Answered

    MCH Student Papers Poster Session

    The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA