Date of Award

Fall 11-20-2010

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Department

Public Health

First Advisor

Sheryl Strasser

Second Advisor

Frances McCarty

Abstract

Background: Globally tuberculosis (TB) is one of the leading causes of mortality. There is scientific evidence of sociodemographic, behavioral and health risk factors associated with TB infection and TB disease. In the United States (US), there is a low endemicity of TB and a goal of TB elimination. Objective: The primary objective of the study was to examine the correlation of TB risk factors at the state level in the US to obtain insights specific to the state of TB in the US. The risk factors examined were diabetes rates, smoking rates, alcohol abuse rates, AIDS rates, foreign-born vs. US-born, poverty as expressed by GINI and per capita income and race/ethnicity. Methods: Secondary data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and US Census Bureau on line databases were used. Simple linear regression, bivariate correlation and multiple linear regression were carried out. Results: Significant correlations were found at the state level between TB disease rates and being non-Hispanic White (r=-0.856, p<0.001), foreign-born (r=0.649, p<0.001), GINI (r=0.588, p<0.001) and AIDS diagnosis rates (r=0.579, p<0.001). No significant associations were found between TB disease rates and diabetes rates, smoking rates and alcohol abuse rates. Conclusion: The focus of the fight against TB in the US should be on minority communities, those populated by the foreign-born and those with high rates of AIDS particularly where a large degree of income inequality is present.

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