Socioeconomic status and deaths due to unintentional injury among children: A socio-spatial analysis in Taiwan

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An-Kuo Chou
Duan-Rung Chen *
(*) Corresponding Author:
Duan-Rung Chen |


In Taiwan, unintentional injury is the leading cause of death among children <10 years old. Low socioeconomic status is a risk factor associated with a high prevalence of injuries and our study aimed to explore the geographic distribution of mortality due to unintentional injury in this age group assessing the association between this type of injury on the one hand and socioeconomic disadvantages and family structure on the other using cluster and spatial regression analyses. Using exploratory factor analysis, we assembled nine socioeconomic variables into four composite factors including area-level poverty, family burden, family fragility and unemployment. We found significant spatial clusters of childhood deaths due to unintentional injury and identified three major causes of death involved, i.e. traffic accidents, drowning and suffocation. Significant associations were found between death due to unintentional injury and area-level social disadvantages including poverty, family fragility, family economic burden and unemployment, while controlling for spatial autocorrelation. Our conclusion is that socioeconomic disadvantages need to be addressed to reduce the number of deaths due to childhood unintentional injury.

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