Could the Trump presidency be making Latinos sick?

Researchers have found correlations between the election of Donald Trump and worsening health in the U.S.—especially among Latinos.

A new study found a connection between the 2016 presidential election and an increase in preterm births among Latina women in the U.S. Of nearly 33 million births from 2009 to 2017, there were 3% more preterm births than expected in the nine months after the election, researchers found.

Experts quoted in a July 19, 2019 Washington Post article said that the fear of raids, deportation threats, daily tweets, and the Trump administration’s child separation policy is likely to have increased stress, which can harm health. The article described a number of studies on how the Trump presidency is affecting health in the U.S. and noted that a recent Gallup poll found increased stress, anger, and worry among all Americans following the election.

Nancy Krieger, professor of social epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, who was not involved in the new study, told the Washington Post that the research may be underestimating the effect of the Trump presidency. Last year she led a similar study that found that rates of preterm births in New York City increased after the election, particularly among foreign-born Latina women.

“There’s a price being paid for all the hateful rhetoric we’re hearing now,” said Krieger. “It’s not a game or just words. The words are meant to induce fear, and fear carries a physical toll in our bodies.”

Read the Washington Post article: Trump’s presidency may be making Latinos sick

Read a CNN article: A rise in premature births among Latina women may be linked to Trumpe’s election, study says

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Premature birth rates rose after 2016 election—especially among Latina women (Harvard Chan School news)