Social Determinants of Health and Disease Outbreak Patterns in Children in the Early 20th Century Industrial City

Tim Stone, Michigan Technological University
Rose Hildebrant, Michigan Technological University
Michael Bleddyn, Michigan Technological University
Don Lafreniere, Michigan Technological University

The combination of historic health data coupled with individual level demographic data provides valuable insights into the social environment and determinants of health in ways that are not feasible to study with modern subjects. In this paper, we utilize the Copper Country Historical Spatial Data Infrastructure (CCHSDI) which includes high precision spatio-temporal models of the built environment of Michigan, USA’s former copper mining region from 1880-1950. With the CCHSDI we have geocoded and record linked demographic data from the IPUMS 100% count microdata to city directories, school records, and local health data with high precision to specific residential and school buildings. This paper focuses on schoolchildren across the region from 1904 and 1926 with the purpose of gaining a greater understanding of what social factors promoted or inhibited children’s health in the industrial city. Early findings suggest that factors which affect a child’s health include: proximity to industrial activities, the residential crowding, recent immigration and low parental literacy. These findings will assist in strengthening our understanding of the social and built environment-determinants of health and the diffusion of secondary infections among populations in moderately dense industrial communities.

No extended abstract or paper available

 Presented in Session 16. Spatial Epidemiology