Early childhood economic disadvantage and the health of Hispanic children
This research provides a longitudinal view of early childhood economic deprivation and its associations with health among young Hispanic children born in the United States. Of additional interest is whether economic deprivation is associated with child health similarly across all Hispanic children or whether associations differ by maternal nativity or country of origin. Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing data and multinomial logistic regression are used to estimate the effects of total years in poverty, material hardship, and lack of health insurance on Hispanic children's health status at age 5 and change in health status between ages 1 and 5. Results show that multiple measures of early childhood economic deprivation have additive negative associations with Hispanic child health, and that living more years in poverty is associated with declining health status among young Hispanic children. Interaction effects indicate that early childhood poverty has stronger associations with lower age 5 health status and declining health between ages 1 and 5 for children with foreign-born Hispanic mothers than for those with native-born Hispanic mothers. No differences were found in the associations between economic deprivation and child health by maternal country of origin. These results suggest an important role of economic resources for protecting Hispanic child health, and that poor Hispanic children with immigrant mothers may be at particularly high risk of developing health problems as they move out of infancy and into early childhood.
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Volume (Year): 75 (2012)
Issue (Month): 8 ()
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