Sociodemographic Factors Associated With Weekend Birth and Increased Risk of Neonatal Mortality


Patti Hamilton, RN, PhD, College of Nursing, Texas Woman's University, P.O. Box 425498, Denton, TX 76011. E-mail:


Objective:  To learn whether weekend risk of neonatal mortality is related to selected sociodemographic factors.

Design:  A retrospective cohort design. Logistic regression was used to obtain odds ratios, and analysis of variance and chi-square to identify differences in values and incidence of key variables.

Samples:  The data were derived from matched Texas birth and infant death certificates from 1999 through 2001.

Main outcome measures:  A subset of deaths up to 28 days of life attributable to conditions originating in the perinatal period. These deaths were called neonatal mortality-p.

Results:  Women who were White, married, had Medicaid assistance, and had private prenatal care were less likely to deliver on weekends. Odds of neonatal mortality-p increased 36.5% when a birth took place on the weekend. The weekend crude odds of neonatal mortality-p increased for all racial/ethnic groups, but the differences were not statistically significant.

Conclusions:  The likelihood of delivering on the weekend increases with certain sociodemographic factors. This fact is important because the risk of neonatal mortality is higher among weekend births. JOGNN, 35, 208-214; 2006. DOI: 10.1111/J.1552-6909.2006.00034.x.