Intraurban socioeconomic inequalities in life expectancy: a population-based cross-sectional analysis in the city of Córdoba, Argentina (2015-2018)

Santiago Rodríguez López, Natalia Tumas, Usama Bilal, Kari A. Moore, Binod Acharya, Harrison Quick, D. Alex Quistberg, Gabriel E. Acevedo, Ana V. Diez Roux

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives To evaluate variability in life expectancy at birth in small areas, describe the spatial pattern of life expectancy, and examine associations between small-area socioeconomic characteristics and life expectancy in a mid-sized city of a middle-income country. Design Cross-sectional, using data from death registries (2015-2018) and socioeconomic characteristics data from the 2010 national population census. Participants/setting 40 898 death records in 99 small areas of the city of Córdoba, Argentina. We summarised variability in life expectancy at birth by using the difference between the 90th and 10th percentile of the distribution of life expectancy across small areas (P90-P10 gap) and evaluated associations with small-area socioeconomic characteristics by calculating a Slope Index of Inequality in linear regression. Primary outcome Life expectancy at birth. Results The median life expectancy at birth was 80.3 years in women (P90-P10 gap=3.2 years) and 75.1 years in men (P90-P10 gap=4.6 years). We found higher life expectancies in the core and northwest parts of the city, especially among women. We found positive associations between life expectancy and better small-area socioeconomic characteristics, especially among men. Mean differences in life expectancy between the highest versus the lowest decile of area characteristics in men (women) were 3.03 (2.58), 3.52 (2.56) and 2.97 (2.31) years for % adults with high school education or above, % persons aged 15-17 attending school, and % households with water inside the dwelling, respectively. Lower values of % overcrowded households and unemployment rate were associated with longer life expectancy: mean differences comparing the lowest versus the highest decile were 3.03 and 2.73 in men and 2.57 and 2.34 years in women, respectively. Conclusion Life expectancy is substantially heterogeneous and patterned by socioeconomic characteristics in a mid-sized city of a middle-income country, suggesting that small-area inequities in life expectancy are not limited to large cities or high-income countries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere061277
JournalBMJ open
Volume12
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2 2022
Externally publishedYes

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Keywords

  • epidemiology
  • public health
  • social medicine

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