Associations Between Gender, Comorbidities, and Cerebral Palsy Diagnosis Rate Among Regions of Riverside County, California for Children Provisionally Enrolled Under the Age of Three in the Medical Therapy Program

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The Riverside University Health System provides adequate information about adult health disparities within the county; however, very little information is provided regarding health disparities in young children. Literature states that there are gender differences in cerebral palsy (CP) diagnosis and that health disparities can be geographically concentrated. The purpose of this study was to identify any associations between gender, comorbidities, and the rate of CP among regions in Riverside County. The 252 participants used in this study were children under the age of three enrolled into the Medical Therapy Program (MTP) at some point during the years 2015 to 2018. The study investigated if there is a difference in CP diagnosis among MTP children across the four regions of Riverside County and if there are gender differences in the rate of comorbidities among MTP children with a primary CP diagnosis. The results indicated that there were no significant differences in the rate of MTP children diagnosed with CP among the four regions of Riverside County (F (3,37) = .550, p = .651). Additionally, results indicated that there were no significant differences between genders in the diagnosis of comorbidities among children diagnosed with CP in the MTP (X2 (1) = .997, p = .198). Additional research is needed to understand the disparities in disabilities and illness in children in Riverside County; however, these results may eliminate stereotypes based on gender and assumptions of geographical location as they relate to CP in Riverside County.
A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Master of Public Health
Public Health, Health Education