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Revista de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 0124-0064

Abstract

GONZALEZ-PEREZ, Guillermo J et al. Demographic characteristics, social inequality and inequity in Mexican childhood health. Rev. salud pública [online]. 2011, vol.13, n.1, pp. 41-53. ISSN 0124-0064.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0124-00642011000100004.

Objectives Demographically describing the present and future for Mexican children to correlate aspects regarding demographic and social equity during childhood and describing the challenges these variables represent for Mexican children during the next few years. Methods The present and future scenario for Mexican childhood was evaluated using existing population projections. Mortality rates were estimated from avoidable causes during childhood per Mexican state, per state grouped by quartile depending on their marginalisation level and by municipality grouped according to their degree of marginalisation. The Gini coefficient was used for measuring inequality. Results Even though the absolute numbers of children in Mexico will tend to decrease in the future, the number will remain high until 2025. A greatest numbers of children were living in states having the highest degree of social marginalisation. Avoidable mortality was higher in these states compared to states having lower marginalisation. The Gini coefficient was highest concerning mortality rate caused by acute respiratory infection (0.34). Excess of avoidable mortality was evident in municipalities having high and extremely high marginalisation. Conclusions Conditions related to demographic ageing and childhood diseases coexist in Mexico. Inequity in children's health is evident; it is related to high levels of social marginalisation. In-depth structural changes are needed to change this situation which will lead to reducing some Mexican populations' unjust social disadvantages.

Keywords : Child; health inequality; social isolation; child mortality; Mexico.

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