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Neighborhood socio-environmental vulnerability and infant mortality in Hermosillo, Sonora

Publication Abstract

Lara-Valencia, F., G. Alvarez-Hernandez, Sioban D. Harlow, C. Denman, and H. Garcia-Perez. 2012. "Neighborhood socio-environmental vulnerability and infant mortality in Hermosillo, Sonora." Salud Publica de Mexico, 54(4): 367-74.

OBJECTIVE: This paper explores the impact of contextual variables at the neighborhood level on a health marker in the city of Hermosillo, Mexico and discusses the importance of collaboration between planners and health professional to minimize the negative effect of contextual factors on urban health. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Few studies in Mexico have assessed health outcomes at the intra-urban scale and their interaction with neighborhood-level contextual variables. Using spatial analysis and geographical information systems, the paper explores the association between infant mortality and an index of socio-environmental vulnerability used to measure urban contextual factors. RESULTS: Two high infant mortality clusters were detected within neighborhoods characterized by relatively good environmental conditions and one in a neighborhood with a poor environment. CONCLUSIONS: Our results show the clustering of high infant mortality areas and some association with built environment factors in Hermosillo. The results support the need to reconnect public health and urban planning as a way to create healthier environments in Mexican cities.

Country of focus: Mexico.

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