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Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1995 Oct;149(10):1079-84.

Housing subsidies and pediatric undernutrition.

Author information

  • 1Division of General Pediatrics, Boston (Mass) City Hospital, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To test the hypothesis that receipt of housing subsidies by poor families is associated with improved nutritional status of their children.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

SETTING:

Pediatric emergency department of an urban municipal hospital.

PATIENTS:

Convenience sample of 203 children younger than 3 years and their families who were being seen during one of twenty-seven 24-hour periods.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Anthropometric indicators (z scores of weight for age, weight-for-height, and height-for-age), and the proportion of children with low growth indicator (weight-for-height below the 10th percentile or height-for-age below the fifth percentile, or both, of the reference population).

RESULTS:

Multivariate analysis controlling for demographics and program participation showed that receipt of housing assistance contributed significantly to z scores for weight-for-age (P = .03) and weight-for-height (P = .04). The risk of a child's having low growth indicators was 21.6% for children whose families were on the waiting list for housing assistance compared with 3.3% for those whose families received subsidies (adjusted odds ratio = 8.2, 95% confidence interval = 2.2 to 30.4, P = .002)

CONCLUSION:

Receiving a housing subsidy is associated with increased growth in children from low-income families, an effect that is consistent with a protective effect of housing subsidies against childhood undernutrition.

PMID:
7550809
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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