Racialized Health Inequities: Quantifying Socioeconomic and Stress Pathways Using Moderated Mediation.

TitleRacialized Health Inequities: Quantifying Socioeconomic and Stress Pathways Using Moderated Mediation.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2023
AuthorsBrown, TH, Hargrove, TW, Homan, P, Adkins, DE
ISSN Number1533-7790

Racism drives population health inequities by shaping the unequal distribution of key social determinants of health, such as socioeconomic resources and exposure to stressors. Research on interrelationships among race, socioeconomic resources, stressors, and health has proceeded along two lines that have largely remained separate: one examining differential effects of socioeconomic resources and stressors on health across racialized groups (moderation processes), and the other examining the role of socioeconomic resources and stressors in contributing to racial inequities in health (mediation processes). We conceptually and analytically integrate these areas using race theory and a novel moderated mediation approach to path analysis to formally quantify the extent to which an array of socioeconomic resources and stressors-collectively and individually-mediate racialized health inequities among a sample of older adults from the Health and Retirement Study. Our results yield theoretical contributions by showing how the socioeconomic status-health gradient and stress processes are racialized (24% of associations examined varied by race), substantive contributions by quantifying the extent of moderated mediation of racial inequities (approximately 70%) and the relative importance of various social factors, and methodological contributions by showing how commonly used simple mediation approaches that ignore racialized moderation processes overestimate-by between 5% and 30%-the collective roles of socioeconomic status and stressors in accounting for racial inequities in health.

Citation Key13349
PubMed ID37218993