Neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation and psychiatric medication purchases. Different neighborhood delineations, different results? A nationwide register-based multilevel study  

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Abstract

Previous studies of neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation and mental health treatment have shown mixed results. Multiple reviews have highlighted that the definition and measurement of neighborhoods can lead to different results, providing one explanation for these mixed findings. This study compares the use of micro-areas created using an automated redistricting algorithm and divided by physical barriers with the use of two administrative units, Danish parishes and postal codes. The geographical data are linked to Danish register data of the Danish population from age 16 in 2017, N = 4,347,001, to measure the association between the purchase of psychiatric medication and neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation using logistic multilevel models. Neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation is associated with a slightly increased probability of redeeming prescriptions for psychiatric medication after controlling for individual sociodemographic composition. However, this association was present only for micro-areas and not for parishes or postal codes. The results indicate that neighborhood effects on psychiatric medication purchases are affected by the neighborhood delineations used and that future studies should carefully consider how neighborhoods are defined and measured.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102675
JournalHealth & Place
Volume72
ISSN1353-8292
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021

Keywords

  • Neighborhood effects
  • Modifiable areal unit problem
  • Psychiatric medication purchases
  • Mental health
  • Socioeconomic deprivation

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