Child Vulnerabilities in Times of Pandemic, Madrid during the Spanish Influenza

Diego Ramiro Fariñas, IEGD-CCHS Spanish National Research Council (CSIC)
Stanislao Mazzoni, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC)
Michel Oris, University of Geneva
Dariya Ordanovich, Spanish National Research Council

Living in times of one of the largest pandemics in history, the Spanish Influenza, was not easy for the madrilean dwellers, even worst for children whose parents died during the different pandemic waves that Madrid suffered between May 1918 and January 1920, or were affected directly by the pandemic, dying during one of those waves. To estimate childhood mortality and its spatial distribution in the city of Madrid, Spain, we build on a database covering all the births recorded in Madrid from 1917 until 1925 and all the deaths from 1917 till 1926 using causes of deaths information. The context of a big city, of a capital of a South European State has almost never been studied with nominal individual data. We analyze the risk of dying during infancy. In the middle of one of the largest pandemics in history, respectively child mortality, with a multivariate approach controlling for birth legitimacy, age of the mother and age gap between father and mother (if known). Then, our first key is the distinction between a minority of Madrid natives and a majority of migrants who came from various regions. We use the origin of the parent(s) as a filter of the relationships between infant and children survival and economic and epidemiological stresses. We also test how this mediating effect is affected when place of residence of the parent(s) (neighborhood or barrios). Competing risk models by causes of death are also instructive. At a later stage, the linkage with the listing of inhabitants will add crucial information about the socioeconomic status of the parent(s). We will then see at which point the sensitivity of infant and child mortality to epidemiological and economic fluctuations varied according to the position in the social stratification.

No extended abstract or paper available

 Presented in Session 66. Health and Hazards I : Pandemic Geographies