Racial Differences in the Social Determinants of Health among Pregnant Women - Abstract
Background: Shreveport consists of 57% of black population with poverty rate of 25 %. Poverty is the main driving force contributing majorly to the social determinants of health (SDOH). Using a convenient sample of pregnant women, we planned this study in a quest to look at the relationship between the racial disparity and the SDOH. Methods: A formal IRB approval was obtained. The need for consent was waived as the survey questions were part of the history taking process. A cross-sectional study was performed using a convenient sample of pregnant women. All pregnant women on admission to the labor unit completed the 10-items SDOH questionnaire (financial condition, food insecurity, transport facility, physical activity, stress, social connections, housing stability, depression, tobacco, and alcohol use). The information on important variables including age, race, marital status, body mass index, birth outcome (gestational age and birth weight) was accessed electronically and analyzed for differences in SDOH among black and white women. Women were excluded if they were admitted for non-labor indications. Results: A total of 48 responses were analyzed, 29 were from black women and 19 from white women during the period of one month. We noted no significant differences in the SDOH among both groups. The significant differences were noted in the marital status (17% and 52% married, p = 0.009), delivering gestational age (37.8 weeks and 38.3 weeks, p =0.01) and birth weight (3021 grams and 3326 grams, p = 0.01) among black and white women, respectively. Conclusions: No significant racial differences were noted between the black and white pregnant women with respect to the SDOH.