Document Detail

Marital status and infant health outcomes.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  1439936     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Out-of-wedlock status has long been recognized as a demographic risk factor associated with infant mortality and low birthweight. However, the relationship between marital status and birth outcomes varies by maternal race and age. The negative impact of unmarried status is greatest for white women aged 20 and over. High infant mortality rates for married teen mothers challenge the assumption that marriage necessarily provides a protective environment for childbearing. Maternal and child health research and policy have been hindered by a deviance model of out-of-wedlock fertility, which is both biased and outdated. Inconsistencies in the effect of marital status indicate variations in both economic and social resources. Purely behavioral explanations for escalated risks to unmarried mothers are not justified by research findings. Alternative interpretations suggest the need for greater societal involvement in maternal health care created in part by changes in family structure.
T Bennett
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Social science & medicine (1982)     Volume:  35     ISSN:  0277-9536     ISO Abbreviation:  Soc Sci Med     Publication Date:  1992 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1992-12-14     Completed Date:  1992-12-14     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8303205     Medline TA:  Soc Sci Med     Country:  ENGLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1179-87     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of California, San Francisco 94143.
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MeSH Terms
Birth Weight
Continental Population Groups
Infant Mortality*
Infant, Newborn
North Carolina / epidemiology

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