Maternal Health

Poverty and Food Insecurity During Pregnancy

San Francisco Bay Area, and California | 2012

Data Source:

California Department of Public Health, MIHA Survey


Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies

Data are from the California Department of Public Health, Regional Snapshots and Geographic Comparisons from the Maternal and Infant Health Assessment (MIHA) Survey, published in December 2014. MIHA is an annual population-based survey of California resident women with a live birth. In 2012 the sample size was 6,810. San Francisco Bay Area data include the 9-County region. Food Insecurity was calculated from the modified U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Security Module Six Item Short Form and categorized as food secure (0-1) or food insecure (2-6). Responses with one or two missing values were imputed. WIC is the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, which provides Federal grants to States for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk. In 2012, WIC status was obtained from WIC administrative data (WIC ISIS) and linked to the MIHA survey. CalFresh (federally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, SNAP), is a program that helps to improve the health and well-being of qualified households and individuals by providing them a means to meet their nutritional needs. CalFresh issues monthly electronic benefits that can be used to buy most foods at many markets and food stores. Income Below Federal Poverty Guideline was calculated from monthly family income, before taxes from all sources, including jobs, welfare, disability, unemployment, child support, interest, dividends, and support from family members, and the number of people living on that income.

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