International Development, Community, and Environment

Title

Analyzing Temporal Trends and Spatial Patterns in adverse Birth Outcomes in Massachusetts from 2000–2014

Document Type

Article

Abstract

This study explores temporal trends and spatial patterns in adverse birth outcomes (ABO) in the state of Massachusetts from 2000 to 2014. ABO include low birthweight (<2500 >g) and preterm births (gestational age <37 >weeks). This research evaluates if there are areas in Massachusetts that have experienced statistically significant increases or decreases in ABO throughout the study period. Birth data was obtained from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and only singleton, live births were included for the analysis. The data were aggregated to census tracts, and the total number of births and the number of ABOs were calculated for each census tract for each year. In total, 1478 census tracts were included in this analysis. Trends and patterns of ABO were evaluated using the Space Time Cube and the Mann-Kendall statistic and a multiple linear regression was conducted to identify potential associations between socioeconomic factors and prevalence of ABO. Results showed that there were associations between the socioeconomic indicators and the ABO rate (particularly educational attainment, income, and diversity) though there were no conclusive racial disparities present throughout the state or 15-year study period. Results of this study can be used to identify areas that are experiencing an increase in ABO to potentially allow for more effective, targeted intervention methods.

Publication Title

Applied Geography

Publication Date

12-1-2020

Volume

125

ISSN

0143-6228

DOI

10.1016/j.apgeog.2020.102331

Keywords

GIS, health, low birth weight, obstetrics, preterm birth, USA

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