Decomposition of socioeconomic inequalities in arboviral diseases in Brazil and Colombia (2007-2017)


BACKGROUND: We used surveillance data from Brazil and Colombia during 2007-2017 to assess the presence of socioeconomic inequalities on dengue, chikungunya and Zika at the neighborhood level in two Latin American cities. METHODS: To quantify the inequality, we estimated and decomposed the relative concentration index of inequality (RCI) accounting for the spatiotemporal distribution of the diseases. RESULTS: There were 281 426 arboviral cases notified in Fortaleza, Brazil, and 40 889 in Medellin, Colombia. The RCI indicated greater concentration of dengue cases among people living in low socioeconomic settings in both sites. The RCIs for chikungunya in Fortaleza covered the line of equality during their introduction in 2014, while the RCIs for Zika and chikungunya in Medellin indicated the presence of a small inequality. The RCI decomposition showed that year of notification and age were the main contributors to this inequality. In Medellin, the RCI decomposition showed that age and access to waste management accounted for 75.5%, 72.2% and 54.5% of the overall inequality towards the poor for dengue, chikungunya and Zika, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Our study presents estimates of the socioeconomic inequality of arboviruses and its decomposition in two Latin American cities. We corroborate the concentration of arboviral diseases in low socioeconomic neighborhoods and identify that year of occurrence, age, presence of healthcare facilities and waste management are key determinants of the heterogenous distribution of endemic arboviruses across the socioeconomic spectrum.

Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg
Sam Harper
Sam Harper
Associate Professor of Epidemiology

My research interests include impact evaluation, reproducible research, and social epidemiology.