Socioeconomic position and excess mortality during the heat wave of 2003 in Barcelona

Carme Borrell, Marc Marí-Dell'Olmo, Maica Rodríguez-Sanz, Patrícia Garcia-Olalla, Joan A. Caylà, Joan Benach, Carles Muntaner

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48 Citations (Scopus)


The objective of this study is to determine whether the excess of mortality which occurred in Barcelona during the summer of 2003 was dependent on age, gender and educational level. We included all deaths among Barcelona residents 20 years of age and older that occurred in the city during the months of June, July and August of 2003 and also during the same months of the five preceding years. Poisson regression models were fitted to obtain the risk of death in 2003 with respect to the period 1998-2002. The relative risk (RR) of mortality during the summer of 2003, compared to the summers of the previous 5 years, was higher for women than for men and among older ages. Although an increase among women was observed in all educational groups, in some age groups the increase was larger for people with less than primary education. The excess number of deaths was higher for those with less education. These results suggest that age, gender and educational level were important determinants of excess mortality in the 2003 Barcelona heat wave.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)633-640
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Epidemiology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Sept


  • Environment
  • Heat wave
  • Mortality
  • Socioeconomic factors
  • Urban health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology


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