Ample research cites unequal distribution of child mortality according to wealth, geography, and education.
Yet few studies address ethnicity, write Joanna R.M. Armstrong Schellenberg and Della Berhanu of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.
An innovative study segmented mortality data of children under 5 in 36 in low and middle income countries by ethnicity. Among the takeaways:
- Children in ethnic groups with highest mortality were over 3X likelier to die than children in groups with the lowest mortality in the same country
- Minorities did not bear the highest burden: In 2 countries, the largest ethnic groups had the highest rates
Researchers still need to determine why rates differ across ethnicities—the “causes of the causes.”
The Lancet Global Health (commentary)