Racial residential segregation and racial disparities in stillbirth in the United States

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Abstract

We examined whether current and/or persistent racial residential segregation is associated with black-white stillbirth disparities among 49,969 black and 71,785 white births from the Consortium on Safe Labor (2002–2008). Black-white segregation was measured using the dissimilarity index and the isolation index, categorized into population-based tertiles. Using hierarchical logistic models, we found low and decreasing levels of segregation were associated with decreased odds of stillbirth, with blacks benefitting more than whites. Decreasing segregation may prevent approximately 900 stillbirths annually among U.S. blacks. Reducing structural racism, segregation in particular, could help reduce black-white stillbirth disparities.

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