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Lancet Psychiatry. 2019 Jun;6(6):506-517. doi: 10.1016/S2215-0366(19)30126-9. Epub 2019 May 13.

Ethnic density and other neighbourhood associations for mortality in severe mental illness: a retrospective cohort study with multi-level analysis from an urbanised and ethnically diverse location in the UK.

Author information

1
Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neurosciences, King's College London, London, UK; South London and Maudsley National Health Service Foundation Trust, London, UK. Electronic address: jayati.das-munshi@kcl.ac.uk.
2
Department of Population Health Sciences, Faculty of Life Sciences and Medicine, King's College London, London, UK.
3
Department of Health Services and Population Research, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neurosciences, King's College London, London, UK.
4
Department of Health and Welfare, University of Taipei, Taipei City, Taiwan.
5
Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neurosciences, King's College London, London, UK; South London and Maudsley National Health Service Foundation Trust, London, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Neighbourhood social context might play a role in modifying mortality outcomes in severe mental illness, but has received little attention to date. Therefore, we aimed to assess in an ethnically diverse and urban location the association of neighbourhood-level characteristics and individual-level factors for all-cause, natural-cause, and unnatural-cause mortality in those with severe mental illness.

METHODS:

We did a retrospective cohort study using a case-registry from a large secondary mental health-care Trust in an ethnically diverse and urban location in south London, UK. Linked data for deaths and areas of residence were identified from the case-registry. We included all individuals aged 15 years or more at the time of diagnosis for a severe mental illness from Jan 1, 2007, to Dec 31, 2014. We used individual-level information in our analyses, such as gender, marital status, and the presence of current or previous substance use disorders. We assessed neighbourhood or area-level indicators at the Lower Super Output Area level. Association of neighbourhood-level characteristics, which included the interaction between ethnicity and own ethnic density, deprivation, urbanicity, and social fragmentation, alongside individual-level factors for all-cause, natural-cause, and unnatural-cause mortality in those with severe mental illness was assessed.

FINDINGS:

A total of 18 201 individuals were included in this cohort for analyses, with a median follow-up of 6·36 years. There were 1767 (9·7%) deaths from all causes, 1417 (7·8%) from natural causes, and 192 (1·1%) from unnatural causes. In the least ethnically dense areas, the adjusted rate ratio (aRR) for all-cause mortality in ethnic minority groups with severe mental illness compared with white British people with severe mental illness were similar (aRR 0·96, 95% CI 0·71-1·29); however in the highest ethnic density areas, ethnic minority groups with severe mental illness had a lower risk of death (aRR 0·52, 95% CI 0·38-0·71; p<0·0001), with similar trends for natural-cause mortality (p=0·071 for statistical interaction). In the cohort with severe mental illness, residency in deprived, urban, and socially fragmented neighbourhoods was not associated with higher mortality rates. Compared with the general population, age-standardised and gender-standardised mortality ratios were elevated in the cohort with severe mental illness across all neighbourhood-level characteristics assessed.

INTERPRETATION:

For ethnic minority groups with severe mental illness, residency in areas of higher own-group ethnic density is associated with lower mortality compared to white British groups with severe mental illness.

FUNDING:

Health Foundation, National Institute for Health Research, EU Seventh Framework, and National Institute of Mental Health.

Comment in

PMID:
31097399
PMCID:
PMC6551347
DOI:
10.1016/S2215-0366(19)30126-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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