- The prospects for survival of children in low and middle income countries are linked to their families socio-economic status (SES), of which income is only one component. Developing a comprehensive measure of SES is required. Informed by clinical experience, a 15-item instrument was designed in Guatemala to categorize SES by five levels in each item. Almost 75% of families attending the Unidad Nacional de Oncología Pediátrica were in the lowest three of six categories, providing a framework for stratified financial and nutritional support. The measure of SES offers an opportunity for examining associations with health outcomes throughout Latin America.