A Multilevel Analysis of Low Birth Weight and Black-White Interaction

P. Johnelle Sparks, University of Texas at San Antonio
Susanne Schmidt, University of Texas at San Antonio

Residential segregation has been shown to have differential impacts on infant health outcomes depending on the dimension of segregation being assessed. However, most existing research using multilevel models to investigate the impact of residential segregation on individual infant health outcomes focuses on black-white residential segregation in metropolitan statistical areas of major US cities on these outcomes. This research borrows theoretically from this literature but expands the notion of residential segregation having an impact on birth weight status by using a measure of racial/ethnic interaction for a national sample of US births. Hierarchical linear models are used to explore the independent contribution of this measure of segregation individual birth weight. Data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study – Birth Cohort data set, along with data from the U.S. Census, are used for this study. This analysis indicates that increased interaction among different racial/ethnic groups leads to higher individual birth weight for infants.

  See extended abstract

Presented in Session 180: Residential Segregation and Health