Higher income neighborhoods are associated with better health, a relation observed in many cross-sectional studies. However, prior research focused on the prevalence of health conditions, and examining the incidence of new health conditions may provide stronger support for a potential causal role of neighborhoods on health. We used the 2004 and 2014 waves of the Midlife in the United States Study (n = 1726; ages 34–83) to examine health condition incidence as a function of neighborhood income. Among participants who had lived in the same neighborhood across the time period, we hypothesized that higher neighborhood income would be associated with a lower incidence of health conditions ten years later. Health included 18 chronic conditions related to mental (anxiety, depression) and physical (cardiovascular, immune) health. Multinomial logistic regression analyses adjusting for individual income and sociodemographics indicated that the odds of developing two or more new health conditions (no new health conditions as referent), was significantly lower (OR = 0.92, CI: 0.86, 0.99) for every $10,000 increment in neighborhood income. Associations did not vary by age or neighborhood tenure. Results add to a literature documenting that higher neighborhood income is associated with better health.
Robinette, J. W., Charles, S. T., & Gruenewald, T. L. (2017). Neighborhood socioeconomic status and health: A longitudinal analysis. Journal of Community Health, 42, 865–871. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10900-017-0327-6