Populations at Risk Across the Lifespan: Population Studies
The Effect of Poverty and Income Disparity on the Psychological Well-Being of Hong Kong Children
Article first published online: 3 AUG 2014
© 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Public Health Nursing
Volume 32, Issue 3, pages 212–221, May/June 2015
How to Cite
Ho, K. Y., Li, W. H. C. and Chan, S. S. C. (2015), The Effect of Poverty and Income Disparity on the Psychological Well-Being of Hong Kong Children. Public Health Nursing, 32: 212–221. doi: 10.1111/phn.12147
- Issue published online: 8 MAY 2015
- Article first published online: 3 AUG 2014
- depressive symptoms;
- income disparity;
- quality of life;
This study explored the impact of poverty and income disparity on the psychological well-being of Hong Kong Chinese children.
Design and Sample
A cross-sectional study was conducted in 12 elementary schools from the three highest and three lowest median household income districts. A total of 1,725 pupils were recruited with 898 pupils came from low-income and 827 from high-income families.
Participants were asked to respond to the Chinese version of the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale for Children, the Rosenberg self-esteem scale, and the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory. The data were collected from 2012 to 2013.
Children from low-income families reported statistically significant lower scores in self-esteem and quality of life, but higher scores in depressive symptoms than those from high-income families. Income disparity had their greatest impact on children's self-esteem.
This study has addressed a gap in the literature by comparing the self-esteem, depressive symptoms, and quality of life among children living in low- and high-income families. The results add further evidence to the literature that poverty and income disparity may have a negative impact on the psychological well-being of children.