Online Program

Proximity to public housing development and the rates of infant mortality and preterm birth

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 11:10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

Meaghan Munn, MPH, Department of Epidemiology and Community Health, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA
Saba Masho, MD, MPH, DrPH, Department of Family Medicine and Population Health, Division of Epidemiology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA
Phillip Archer, Ph.D., Department of Natural Sciences, Virginia Union University, Richmond, VA
Background: Reducing rates of adverse birth outcomes for all mothers is a central focus of public health efforts to eliminate health disparities. This study examined the statistical significance of adverse birth outcomes among women who live near inner city public housing developments (PHDs).

Methods: Vital record data were examined on births occurring in Richmond, Virginia. Birth data and PHDs in Richmond were geocoded using ArcGIS v10. A buffer radius of 1,000 feet from each PHD was created and all births that fell within zone were designated as near the PHD. Birth outcomes of women living near PHDs were compared to those outside the buffer zone. Multivariable logistic regression was used to model the relationships of preterm birth and infant mortality to those living near PHDs.

Results: A total of 30,554 live, singleton births occurred in Richmond City from 1997 to 2007 with 3,417 (11.2%) living near a PHD. The rates of preterm birth and infant mortality were significantly higher for those living near PHDs compared to those who did not. The adjusted logistic regression model showed that the odds of infant death (aOR=1.38; 95%CI: 1.04-1.83) and preterm birth (aOR=1.19; 95%CI: 1.06-1.32) remained higher for those living 1,000 feet from PHDs after controlling for confounders.

Conclusion: Women living near PHDs have significantly higher rates of adverse birth outcomes compared to those not living near PHDs. PHDs can be utilized as a public health tool to improve maternal and child health by expanding the availability of health services at these locations.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the association between proximity to public housing developments and rates of preterm birth and infant mortality.

Keyword(s): Maternal and Child Health, Pregnancy Outcomes

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have participated in multiple projects involving maternal and child health throughout my public health coursework and career.
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.