Neighborhood environmental vulnerability and pediatric asthma morbidity in US metropolitan areas

Sneha Kannoth, Sarah E. Chung, Kelvin D. Tamakloe, Sandra S. Albrecht, Alexander Azan, Earle C. Chambers, Perry E. Sheffield, Azure Thompson, Jennifer A. Woo Baidal, Stephanie Lovinsky-Desir, Jeanette A. Stingone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Research suggests demographic, economic, residential, and health-related factors influence vulnerability to environmental exposures. Greater environmental vulnerability may exacerbate environmentally related health outcomes. We developed a neighborhood environmental vulnerability index (NEVI) to operationalize environmental vulnerability on a neighborhood level. Objective: We explored the relationship between NEVI and pediatric asthma emergency department (ED) visits (2014-19) in 3 US metropolitan areas: Los Angeles County, Calif; Fulton County, Ga; and New York City, NY. Methods: We performed separate linear regression analyses examining the association between overall NEVI score and domain-specific NEVI scores (demographic, economic, residential, health status) with pediatric asthma ED visits (per 10,000) across each area. Results: Linear regression analyses suggest that higher overall and domain-specific NEVI scores were associated with higher annual pediatric asthma ED visits. Adjusted R2 values suggest that overall NEVI scores explained at least 40% of the variance in pediatric asthma ED visits. Overall NEVI scores explained more of the variance in pediatric asthma ED visits in Fulton County. NEVI scores for the demographic, economic, and health status domains explained more of the variance in pediatric asthma ED visits in each area compared to the NEVI score for the residential domain. Conclusion: Greater neighborhood environmental vulnerability was associated with greater pediatric asthma ED visits in each area. The relationship differed in effect size and variance explained across the areas. Future studies can use NEVI to identify populations in need of greater resources to mitigate the severity of environmentally related outcomes, such as pediatric asthma.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

Keywords

  • Pediatric asthma
  • environmental vulnerability
  • neighborhood
  • racial disparities

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