Socioeconomic and racial/ethnic disparities in the incidence of bacteremic pneumonia among US adults

Am J Public Health. 2010 Oct;100(10):1904-11. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2009.181313. Epub 2010 Aug 19.


Objectives: We examined associations between the socioeconomic characteristics of census tracts and racial/ethnic disparities in the incidence of bacteremic community-acquired pneumonia among US adults.

Methods: We analyzed data on 4870 adults aged 18 years or older with community-acquired bacteremic pneumonia identified through active, population-based surveillance in 9 states and geocoded to census tract of residence. We used data from the 2000 US Census to calculate incidence by age, race/ethnicity, and census tract characteristics and Poisson regression to estimate rate ratios (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

Results: During 2003 to 2004, the average annual incidence of bacteremic pneumonia was 24.2 episodes per 100 000 Black adults versus 10.1 per 100 000 White adults (RR = 2.40; 95% CI = 2.24, 2.57). Incidence among Black residents of census tracts with 20% or more of persons in poverty (most impoverished) was 4.4 times the incidence among White residents of census tracts with less than 5% of persons in poverty (least impoverished). Racial disparities in incidence were reduced but remained significant in models that controlled for age, census tract poverty level, and state.

Conclusions: Adults living in impoverished census tracts are at increased risk of bacteremic pneumonia and should be targeted for prevention efforts.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Black or African American*
  • Haemophilus Infections / epidemiology
  • Haemophilus Infections / ethnology*
  • Haemophilus influenzae / isolation & purification*
  • Health Status Disparities*
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Middle Aged
  • Pneumonia, Pneumococcal / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia, Pneumococcal / ethnology*
  • Poverty Areas*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Risk
  • Streptococcus agalactiae / isolation & purification
  • Streptococcus pyogenes / isolation & purification
  • United States / epidemiology
  • White People
  • Young Adult