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Race/Ethnicity, Nativity, and U.S. Adult Mortality


Hummer, Robert A.; Rogers, Richard G.; Nam, Charles B.; & LeClere, Felicia B. (1999). Race/Ethnicity, Nativity, and U.S. Adult Mortality. Social Science Quarterly, 80(1), 136-153.


Investigates how race/ethnicity is associated with the mortality risks of US adults, while considering the influence of nativity. Data came from the National Health Interview Survey/National Death Index linked data set. The authors used discrete-time hazards models to estimate the association between race, ethnicity, nativity, and mortality. Native-born (NB) Black Ss had the highest odds of death among all age groups of adults, while foreign-born (FB) Black and Asian-American Ss displayed especially low odds of death. Hispanic Ss displayed intermediate mortality, similar to non-Hispanic White Ss. Race/ethnic differences in mortality are influenced by nativity, with groups having the highest percentage of FB members experiencing lower mortality risks than might otherwise be the case. FB persons also show lower mortality across all age groups than NB, although that difference varies across races/ethnicities. Based on these results, researchers and policy-makers must be cognizant of immigrant composition and how compositional mix affects mortality for racial-ethnic groups and for the whole population.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Social Science Quarterly


Hummer, Robert A.
Rogers, Richard G.
Nam, Charles B.
LeClere, Felicia B.