Teen birth (TB) imposes serious health and economic burdens to both individuals and government. Various attempts have been made to overcome TB such as teen pregnancy prevention evidence-based programs. However, these programs might have declined teen birth rate (TBR), most of which do not address the influencing socio-economic factors linked to areas where teenagers live. This study is aimed at investigating socio-economic factors contributing to TB and identify their geographical disparities. The methodology was developed using the vulnerability theory to examine the complex relationship between TB and socio-economic factors. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) were employed to analyze census data. Findings suggest that socio-economically disadvantaged minorities, including unemployed black and uneducated Hispanic, are more vulnerable to TB. Additionally, geographic locations of communities where such teenager live are recognized. The outcomes verified the utility of the vulnerability theory to predict the geographical locations of vulnerable teens that can be leveraged by policymakers to allocate more health resources and perform place-specific interventions to effectively reduce TBR.
Sadeghinaeenifard, Fariba & Hawamdeh, Suliman M.
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