225728 Racial and Socioeconomic Disparities in the Hospitalization Rate of Asthma among Different Neighborhoods in New Jersey: A ZIP Code Analysis

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Bongguk Jin, Ph D , New Solutions Inc. & Beacon Health Informatics., New Brunswick, NJ
Nancy Erickson, MSW , New Solutions Inc., New Brunswick, NJ
Don Dykstra , New Solutions Inc. & Beacon Health Informatics, New Brunswick, NJ
Often, research on the disparity in asthma is examined at the individual level, therefore, limiting its analysis to the sample. This study is intended to explore disparities at the neighborhood level, which enables the linking of asthma rates at this level to the socioeconomic profile of the neighborhood and to generalize findings to New Jersey population. The population adjusted hospitalization rate of asthma in each ZIP Code in NJ was identified from NJ hospital discharge data (2005-2008) and US Census. The rates of Blacks, Hispanics, poverty level, unemployment, educational level, rental population, and older housing (built before 1939) were obtained from the US Census. The rate of primary care physicians (PCP) in each ZIP Code was calculated from New Solutions Inc's physician data base.

The results of multiple regression analysis show that poverty, black race, education, unemployment, and the availability of PCP, stated in that order of importance, successfully explained the rate of asthma hospitalization by 77%. Poverty was clearly the strongest predictor. The effects of black race and education remained strong after controlling for poverty and the other variables. Contrary to expectation, the effect of PCP availability was positive but minimal as was unemployment. This study found that the disparities among different racial and socioeconomic groups remained strong from 2007-2008 in NJ. The fact that the effect of black race and education remain strong after controlling for all the other socioeconomic factors may suggest that behavioral and life style aspects may interplay with the effects of race and education on asthma.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Public health administration or related administration

Learning Objectives:
1. List socioeconomic factors that cause the disparity in asthma hospitalization rates among different neighborhoods. 2. Describe the relative importance of each socioeconomic factor that causes disparity in asthma.

Keywords: Asthma, Health Disparities

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because in my position at New Solutions inc., I am responsible for research and analytical analysis of all aspects of the firm's research activites including risk adjusted studies of quality outcomes and resource utilization, survey research and development of analytical research projects. I recently completed development of a community health index for each zip code in New jersey.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.