Minority Health Archive

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Hospitalizations and Deaths Associated with 2009 Pandemic Influenza A (H1N1) Virus Infections in the United States

Dee, Deborah L. and Bensyl, Diana M. and Gindler, Jacqueline and Truman, Benedict I. and Allen, Barbara G. and D’Mello, Tiffany and Pérez, Alejandro and Kamimoto, Laurie and Biggerstaff, Matthew and Blanton, Lenee and Fowlkes, Ashley and Glover, Maleeka J. and Swerdlow, David L. and Finelli, Lyn (2011) Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Hospitalizations and Deaths Associated with 2009 Pandemic Influenza A (H1N1) Virus Infections in the United States. Annals of Epidemiology, 21 (8). pp. 623-630. ISSN 10472797

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PURPOSE: Concerns have been raised regarding possible racial-ethnic disparities in 2009 pandemic influenza A (H1N1) (pH1N1) illness severity and health consequences for U.S. minority populations. METHODS: Using data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Emerging Infections Program Influenza-Associated Hospitalization Surveillance, and Influenza-Associated Pediatric Mortality Surveillance, we calculated race-ethnicity-specific, age-adjusted rates of self-reported influenza-like illness (ILI) and pH1N1-associated hospitalizations. We used χ(2) tests to evaluate racial-ethnic disparities in ILI-associated health care-seeking behavior and pH1N1 hospitalization. To evaluate pediatric deaths, we compared racial-ethnic proportions of deaths against U.S. population distributions. RESULTS: Prevalence of self-reported ILI was lower among Hispanics (6.5%), higher among American Indians/Alaska Natives (16.2%), and similar among non-Hispanic blacks (7.7%) compared with non-Hispanic whites (8.5%). No racial-ethnic differences were identified in ILI-associated health care-seeking behavior. Age-adjusted pH1N1-associated Emerging Infections Program hospitalization rates were higher among all minority populations (range: 8.1-10.9/100,000 population) compared with non-Hispanic whites (3.0/100,000). The proportion of pH1N1-associated pediatric deaths was higher than expected among Hispanics (31%) and lower than expected among non-Hispanic whites (45%) given the proportions of the U.S. population they comprise (22% and 58%, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: Racial-ethnic disparities in pH1N1-associated hospitalizations and pediatric deaths were identified. Vaccination remains the primary intervention for preventing influenza.

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Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is available at the publisher’s Web site. Access to the full text is subject to the publisher’s access restrictions.
Uncontrolled Keywords: H1N1 Virus, Health Status Disparities, Health Care Disparities, Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Influenza
Subjects: Health > Disparities
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Depositing User: Users 141 not found.
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2011 10:02
Last Modified: 28 Jul 2011 10:02
Link to this item (URI): http://health-equity.lib.umd.edu/id/eprint/2881

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