Work in Process


The Parent-Child relationship is a topic I developed when I was reviewing the population pyramids for the U.S.  By reviewing different HEDIS/NCQA defined regions in the US, and then redefining these regions based on subgroups in order to assess smaller aggregrates of states, I was able to detect several regions in the US that demonstrate a significantly higher percentage of children (0-17 yos) and parents when compared with the total population.   [Note: for this study 18-45 is defined as “parents” as per fecundity census work, instead of 10-45, but sometimes 55 yo is used as the max.]

In the Southeastern corner of this country, the state of Florida and bordering states has a significantly higher percentage of retired people.  This we expect due to the social history of this part of the US.  Just north of and west of this area are two sub-regions, based on the NCQA definition of regions, which have a significantly higher number of women and children.  The third region with greater percentages of Mother and Child members is around the Great Lakes.

Typically, a population pyramid for insured people has a slightly higher mid-age female population than mid-age male population.  This is because for mid-age male people, employment is linked to health coverage, and any parents and children these mid-age males have, are typically covered by their employee’s program.  In addition to the insured members of the family, there are also mid-age females who are employed, and who are single, and who quite often have children that must be insured as well.  This group adds to the burden of health care costs for children and younger to mid-age adult populations with adequate health insurance coverage, and is the reason for this peak in Parent:Child relationships noted for my method of study.

To study this parent:child relationship, I typically assume the women to be the mother most responsible for the child’s health.  Unemployed or unemployed this is usually the case, even in financially, emotionally and professionally stable families.  Therefore, to reduce the kinds of error including parent age males in such family health studies can produce, such as the dilution of statistical significance possible for many outcomes measures, I use the traditional mother:child relationship to engage in this work, knowing that for women not tending to their children adequately there may be male family members serving as substitutes.  I assume a 1:1 ratio for this, even though this assumption is wrong to some extent.

The purpose of all of this population health thinking is to better understand the maps of parent-child relationships and their roles in defining parental and child health status.  The Great Lakes area of the US westward for two or three states also demonstrate a higher amount of mother:child interactions.

In a business sense, this means that the costs for health insurance for mother:child care and the related costs for maintaing health of children and mothers will be higher.  If cost and percentages of allocated services are higher for this group of people, more efforts must be made to provide better health care coverage in these regions at lower costs.  When evaluating such demands for care, cost and prevalence or numbers of people needing such coverage are two very different metrics for this population.  Cost is based on raw values–the American dollar–not necessarily need.  Moral or social need is based on prevalence, the percentage of people needing this special kind of coverage.  Insurance agencies focus on the former, not the latter, but use some measurements linked to the latter are used to define their actions whenever changes in health insurance coverage take place.

Population distribution in the US dictates that the east coast needs more coverage than the west coast, because there are more people on the east coast.  Moral need shows that the west coast needs intervention and educational programs more than the east coast, because the west coast is where the outliers and outlying health behaviors exist.  Seattle is the peak for refusal of immunizations for example (I have a page coming together on this), and although the numbers of child impacted by this refusal is fairly small, this behavior sets the stage for new epidemics to emerge or re-emerge in the United States.  Likewise, there are peaks in unhealthy behavior noted for the midwest, of several types, some related to culture, others to religion, others to illegal and questionable legal human behaviors.  In a way, regionalism anmd regional behavior patterns can be noted due to these clustered outcomes.  These regional features may be demographically based, environmentally based, behaviorally based, and on occasional educational and occupational based.

The following topics/issues were evaluated and perhaps best fit on this page:

Direct Affliction

  • Abandonment or Desertion of Newborn
  • Prenatal Parental alcohol intake (Fetal Exposure to Alcohol)
  • Prenatal Parental drug intake (Fetal Exposure to Narcotics)
  • Child Neglect
  • Physical Child Abuse
  • Psychological Child Abuse
  • Sexual Child Abuse
  • Shaken Baby Syndrome
  • Battered Child Syndrome

Direct-Indirect Afflictions

  • Refusal of Immunizations
  • Refusal of Medical Care for Religious Reasons
  • Childhood Infibulation
  • Childhood Fractures, esp. Lower Arm
  • Childhood Head Injuries
  • Childhood Dislocations, esp. Elbow

Indirect Afflictions, Acute to Chronic

  • Gambling Addiction
  • Alcoholism
  • Pain Killer Addiction or Abuse
  • Narcotic Abuse and Addiction
  • Hallucinogen Abuse and Addiction
  • Cocaine Abuse and Addiction
  • Crack Baby Syndrome

Indirect Afflications, Long Term

  • Scurvy
  • Beri Beri
  • Rickets
  • Goiter
  • Kwashiorker Syndrome