Race, language, and neighborhood predict high-risk preterm Infant Follow Up Program participation

J Perinatol. 2022 Feb;42(2):217-222. doi: 10.1038/s41372-021-01188-2. Epub 2021 Aug 17.


Objectives: Infant Follow Up Programs (IFUPs) provide developmental surveillance for preterm infants after hospital discharge but participation is variable. We hypothesized that infants born to Black mothers, non-English speaking mothers, and mothers who live in "Very Low" Child Opportunity Index (COI) neighborhoods would have decreased odds of IFUP participation.

Study design: There were 477 infants eligible for IFUP between 1/1/2015 and 6/6/2017 from a single large academic Level III NICU. Primary outcome was at least one visit to IFUP. We used multivariable logistic regression to identify factors associated with IFUP participation.

Result: Two hundred infants (41.9%) participated in IFUP. Odds of participation was lower for Black compared to white race (aOR 0.43, p = 0.03), "Very Low" COI compared to "Very High" (aOR 0.39, p = 0.02) and primary non-English speaking (aOR 0.29, p = 0.01).

Conclusion: We identified disparities in IFUP participation. Further study is needed to understand underlying mechanisms to develop targeted interventions for reducing inequities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Black People
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Healthcare Disparities* / ethnology
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Language*
  • Mothers
  • Patient Discharge
  • Patient Participation*
  • Social Determinants of Health*
  • White People