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Poverty and the Health of Children in New Mexico

Опубликовано на портале: 19-05-2004
Kelly O'Donnell
Научный руководитель: Kate Krause
The University of New Mexico, 2002
Подтип: PhD
Тематические разделы: Социология, Экономическая социология, Экономическая социология: Социально-экономическая дифференциация. Бедность, Социальная стратификация

Aннотация:
This dissertation presents the results of three investigations of child poverty in New Mexico. Chapter two examines the role income disparity plays in exacerbating the health consequences of poverty by investigating the connection between income disparity and morbidity and mortality in children. Chapter three uses 1999 survey data to examine the determinants of preventative care and usual source of healthcare for insured children in New Mexico. Finally, chapter four presents the results of simulations conducted for several proposed tax-based programs designed to decrease child poverty. Using a simulation model constructed from individual tax return data, existing tax regulations and safety net programs for the poor, policies are analyzed and compared on the basis of cost (tax expenditure) and expected effects on poor families' economic status. The results of these simulations lead to a prioritized set of policies that are most likely to cost-effectively reduce child poverty in New Mexico.


Poverty among children is a particularly pressing problem in New Mexico. Child poverty is associated with negative social, educational, and health consequences throughout life. Based on average poverty rates over the years 1995, 1996 and 1997, the U.S. Census Bureau reports that the state of New Mexico had the nation's highest rate of child poverty. This dissertation presents the results of three investigations of child poverty in New Mexico. Chapter two examines the role income disparity plays in exacerbating the health consequences of poverty by investigating the connection between income disparity and morbidity and mortality in children. The relationship between income disparity and poor child health outcomes is statistically significant and the correlation, although of small magnitude, is observable at the county level. Chapter three uses 1999 survey data to examine the determinants of preventative care and usual source of healthcare for insured children in New Mexico. It establishes a strong positive correlation, independent of household and parental attributes, between utilization of primary preventative care by insured children and utilization of preventative care by parents. Results further indicate that among insured children, those on Medicaid are twice as likely as those with other types of insurance to receive primary preventative care. Medicaid enrollment also increases the probability that an insured child will have a “usual source of medical care” that is not an emergency room or urgent care center. The results of this study suggest that extending Medicaid to low-income parents may have collateral health benefits for children already enrolled and may also encourage the enrollment of eligible uninsured children. Finally, chapter four presents the results of simulations conducted for several proposed tax-based programs designed to decrease child poverty. Using a simulation model constructed from individual tax return data, existing tax regulations and safety net programs for the poor, policies are analyzed and compared on the basis of cost (tax expenditure) and expected effects on poor families' economic status. The results of these simulations lead to a prioritized set of policies that are most likely to cost-effectively reduce child poverty in New Mexico.

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http://wwwlib.umi.com/dissertations/sear...
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