Racial, ethnic, and language disparities in children's exposure to secondhand smoke

Vibha Anand, Stephen M. Downs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Race and ethnicity affect children's risk of secondhand smoke exposure. However, little is known about how race and language preference impact parents' self-reported smoking and stopping smoking rates. We analyzed data for 16,523 children aged 0-11 years from a pediatric computer decision support system (Child Health Improvement through Computer Automation [CHICA]). CHICA asks families in the waiting room about household smokers. We examined associations between race, insurance, language preference, and household smoking and reported stopping smoking rates using logistic regression. Almost a quarter (23%) of the children's families reported a smoker at home. Hispanic children are least likely (odds ratio [OR]: 0.17, confidence interval [CI]: 0.12-0.24) to have secondhand smoke exposure when compared to African American and white children, as were those with private insurance (OR: 0.52, CI: 0.43-0.64) or no insurance (OR: 0.79, CI: 0.71-0.88) compared to publicly insured. Children from English speaking families were more likely (OR: 1.55, CI: 1.24-1.95) to have secondhand smoke exposure compared to Spanish speaking families. Among smoking families, 30% reported stopping smoking subsequently. Stopping rates were higher in Hispanic (OR: 3.25, CI: 2.06-5.13) and African American (OR: 1.39, CI: 1.01-1.91) families compared to white children's families. Uninsured families were less likely than publicly insured families to report stopping smoking (OR: 0.76, CI: 0.63-0.92). English speaking families were less likely (OR: 0.56, CI: 0.41-0.75) to report stopping smoking compared to Spanish speaking even in a subgroup analyses of Hispanic families (OR: 0.55, CI: 0.39-0.76). In our safety net practices serving children predominantly on public insurance, Spanish speaking families reported the lowest risk of secondhand smoke exposure in children and the highest rate of stopping smoking in the household. Hispanic families may have increasing secondhand exposure and decreasing rates of stopping smoking as they acculturate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)144-151
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric, Allergy, Immunology, and Pulmonology
Volume26
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

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