Outcomes of Children With Critical Bronchiolitis Living in Poor Communities

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There are established associations between adverse health outcomes and poverty, but little is known regarding these associations in critically ill children. We hypothesized that living in poorer communities would be associated with unfavorable outcomes in children with critical bronchiolitis. This retrospective study included children with bronchiolitis admitted to a pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) over a 2-year period. Median household income was estimated from patient ZIP codes and 2014 US Census Bureau data. The 2014 Federal Poverty Threshold (FPT) for a family of 4 was $24 008. Patients were classified as living in ZIP codes below or above the 150% FPT (150FPT). Living <150FPT was associated with longer PICU length of stay (LOS), longer hospital LOS, higher odds of needing mechanical ventilation, and increased hospital charges. In this cohort of critically ill children with bronchiolitis, living in a poorer community was associated with more unfavorable clinical outcomes.

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