Neighborhood Deprivation Predicts Heart Failure Risk in a Low-Income Population of Blacks and Whites in the Southeastern United States

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Abstract

Background:

Recent data suggest that neighborhood socioeconomic environment predicts heart failure (HF) hospital readmissions. We investigated whether neighborhood deprivation predicts risk of incident HF beyond individual socioeconomic status in a low-income population.

Methods and Results:

Participants were 27 078 whites and blacks recruited during 2002 to 2009 in the SCCS (Southern Community Cohort Study), who had no history of HF and were using Centers for Medicare or Medicaid Services. Incident HF diagnoses through December 31, 2010, were ascertained using International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, codes 428.x via linkage with Centers for Medicare or Medicaid Services research files. Participant residential information was geocoded and census tract determined by a spatial join to the US Census Bureau TIGER/Line Shapefiles. The neighborhood deprivation index was constructed using principal components analysis based on census tract-level socioeconomic variables. Cox models with Huber–White cluster sandwich estimator of variance were used to investigate the association between neighborhood deprivation index and HF risk. The study sample was predominantly middle aged (mean, 55.5 years), black (69%), female (63%), low income (70% earned <$15 000/y), and >50% of participants lived in the most deprived neighborhoods (third neighborhood deprivation index tertile). Over median follow-up of 5.2 years, 4300 participants were diagnosed with HF. After adjustment for demographic, lifestyle, and clinical factors, a 1 interquartile increase in neighborhood deprivation index was associated with a 12% increase in risk of HF (hazard ratio, 1.12; 95% confidence interval, 1.07–1.18), and 4.8% of the variance in HF risk (intraclass correlation coefficient, 4.8; 95% confidence interval, 3.6–6.4) was explained by neighborhood deprivation.

Conclusions:

In this low-income population, scant neighborhood resources compound the risk of HF above and beyond individual socioeconomic status and traditional cardiovascular risk factors. Improvements in community resources may be a significant axis for curbing the burden of HF.

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