Income and Race Differences in Children's Health
32 Pages Posted: 26 May 2004 Last revised: 6 Dec 2008
Date Written: 1979
In this paper we explore income and race differences in nine measures of the health of children aged 6 through 11. We show that when health measures from mid-childhood are the subject of analysis, both income and race differences are much less pronounced than they are in infant mortality and birth weight data. We do find differences in the health status of black and white children and of children from high and low income families, but these differences by no means overwhelmingly favor the white or high-income children. With respect to differences by race, whether or not they are adjusted for differences in associated socioeconomic factors, black children in many cases are in better health than their white counterparts, In the case of income differences in health, the high income children do appear to be in better health according to most measures, but their advantage is greatly diminished when one controls for related socioeconomic factors like parents' educational attainment. Even so, for measures relating to the "new morbidity," such as the presence of allergies or excessive tension, children from higher income families are in worse health.
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