Trends in Child Health 1997-2006: Assessing Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Unmet Dental Care Needs

To provide fuller detail on disparities in child health, the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies analyzed selected child health indicators [low birthweight, health status (excellent, very good, good, fair, poor or unknown), unmet dental care needs, ADHD/ADD diagnosis, asthma diagnosis, learning disability diagnosis, and activity limitation] by sociodemographic characteristics of the families in which children reside. This brief examines disparities in the reporting of unmet dental care needs (due to cost) during the past 12 months among children under the age of 18 who are African American, Hispanic or white. Comparisons of unmet dental care needs are made between the racial/ethnic groups of children overall and between children of various racial/ethnic groups in families with comparable socio-demographic characteristics (such as family type, educational attainment of householder, employment status of household, poverty status, and health insurance coverage). Hispanic children are most likely to report unmet dental care needs due to cost.


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