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Sample records for address health inequities

  1. Addressing Environmental Health Inequalities.

    PubMed

    Gouveia, Nelson

    2016-01-01

    Environmental health inequalities refer to health hazards disproportionately or unfairly distributed among the most vulnerable social groups, which are generally the most discriminated, poor populations and minorities affected by environmental risks. Although it has been known for a long time that health and disease are socially determined, only recently has this idea been incorporated into the conceptual and practical framework for the formulation of policies and strategies regarding health. In this Special Issue of the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH), "Addressing Environmental Health Inequalities-Proceedings from the ISEE Conference 2015", we incorporate nine papers that were presented at the 27th Conference of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE), held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in 2015. This small collection of articles provides a brief overview of the different aspects of this topic. Addressing environmental health inequalities is important for the transformation of our reality and for changing the actual development model towards more just, democratic, and sustainable societies driven by another form of relationship between nature, economy, science, and politics. PMID:27618906

  2. Addressing Environmental Health Inequalities

    PubMed Central

    Gouveia, Nelson

    2016-01-01

    Environmental health inequalities refer to health hazards disproportionately or unfairly distributed among the most vulnerable social groups, which are generally the most discriminated, poor populations and minorities affected by environmental risks. Although it has been known for a long time that health and disease are socially determined, only recently has this idea been incorporated into the conceptual and practical framework for the formulation of policies and strategies regarding health. In this Special Issue of the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH), “Addressing Environmental Health Inequalities—Proceedings from the ISEE Conference 2015”, we incorporate nine papers that were presented at the 27th Conference of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE), held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in 2015. This small collection of articles provides a brief overview of the different aspects of this topic. Addressing environmental health inequalities is important for the transformation of our reality and for changing the actual development model towards more just, democratic, and sustainable societies driven by another form of relationship between nature, economy, science, and politics. PMID:27618906

  3. Assessing opinions in community leadership networks to address health inequalities: a case study from Project IMPACT.

    PubMed

    McCauley, M P; Ramanadhan, S; Viswanath, K

    2015-12-01

    This study demonstrates a novel approach that those engaged in promoting social change in health can use to analyze community power, mobilize it and enhance community capacity to reduce health inequalities. We used community reconnaissance methods to select and interview 33 participants from six leadership sectors in 'Milltown', the New England city where the study was conducted. We used UCINET network analysis software to assess the structure of local leadership and NVivo qualitative software to analyze leaders' views on public health and health inequalities. Our main analyses showed that community power is distributed unequally in Milltown, with our network of 33 divided into an older, largely male and more powerful group, and a younger, largely female group with many 'grassroots' sector leaders who focus on reducing health inequalities. Ancillary network analyses showed that grassroots leaders comprise a self-referential cluster that could benefit from greater affiliation with leaders from other sectors and identified leaders who may serve as leverage points in our overall program of public agenda change to address health inequalities. Our innovative approach provides public health practitioners with a method for assessing community leaders' views, understanding subgroup divides and mobilizing leaders who may be helpful in reducing health inequalities.

  4. Assessing opinions in community leadership networks to address health inequalities: a case study from Project IMPACT.

    PubMed

    McCauley, M P; Ramanadhan, S; Viswanath, K

    2015-12-01

    This study demonstrates a novel approach that those engaged in promoting social change in health can use to analyze community power, mobilize it and enhance community capacity to reduce health inequalities. We used community reconnaissance methods to select and interview 33 participants from six leadership sectors in 'Milltown', the New England city where the study was conducted. We used UCINET network analysis software to assess the structure of local leadership and NVivo qualitative software to analyze leaders' views on public health and health inequalities. Our main analyses showed that community power is distributed unequally in Milltown, with our network of 33 divided into an older, largely male and more powerful group, and a younger, largely female group with many 'grassroots' sector leaders who focus on reducing health inequalities. Ancillary network analyses showed that grassroots leaders comprise a self-referential cluster that could benefit from greater affiliation with leaders from other sectors and identified leaders who may serve as leverage points in our overall program of public agenda change to address health inequalities. Our innovative approach provides public health practitioners with a method for assessing community leaders' views, understanding subgroup divides and mobilizing leaders who may be helpful in reducing health inequalities. PMID:26471919

  5. Addressing social determinants of health inequities: what can the state and civil society do?

    PubMed

    Blas, Erik; Gilson, Lucy; Kelly, Michael P; Labonté, Ronald; Lapitan, Jostacio; Muntaner, Carles; Ostlin, Piroska; Popay, Jennie; Sadana, Ritu; Sen, Gita; Schrecker, Ted; Vaghri, Ziba

    2008-11-01

    In this Health Policy article, we selected and reviewed evidence synthesised by nine knowledge networks established by WHO to support the Commission on the Social Determinants of Health. We have indicated the part that national governments and civil society can play in reducing health inequity. Government action can take three forms: (1) as provider or guarantor of human rights and essential services; (2) as facilitator of policy frameworks that provide the basis for equitable health improvement; and (3) as gatherer and monitor of data about their populations in ways that generate health information about mortality and morbidity and data about health equity. We use examples from the knowledge networks to illustrate some of the options governments have in fulfilling this role. Civil society takes many forms: here, we have used examples of community groups and social movements. Governments and civil society can have important positive roles in addressing health inequity if political will exists.

  6. Addressing social determinants of health inequities: what can the state and civil society do?

    PubMed

    Blas, Erik; Gilson, Lucy; Kelly, Michael P; Labonté, Ronald; Lapitan, Jostacio; Muntaner, Carles; Ostlin, Piroska; Popay, Jennie; Sadana, Ritu; Sen, Gita; Schrecker, Ted; Vaghri, Ziba

    2008-11-01

    In this Health Policy article, we selected and reviewed evidence synthesised by nine knowledge networks established by WHO to support the Commission on the Social Determinants of Health. We have indicated the part that national governments and civil society can play in reducing health inequity. Government action can take three forms: (1) as provider or guarantor of human rights and essential services; (2) as facilitator of policy frameworks that provide the basis for equitable health improvement; and (3) as gatherer and monitor of data about their populations in ways that generate health information about mortality and morbidity and data about health equity. We use examples from the knowledge networks to illustrate some of the options governments have in fulfilling this role. Civil society takes many forms: here, we have used examples of community groups and social movements. Governments and civil society can have important positive roles in addressing health inequity if political will exists. PMID:18994667

  7. Addressing social determinants of health inequities through settings: a rapid review.

    PubMed

    Newman, Lareen; Baum, Fran; Javanparast, Sara; O'Rourke, Kerryn; Carlon, Leanne

    2015-09-01

    Changing settings to be more supportive of health and healthy choices is an optimum way to improve population health and health equity. This article uses the World Health Organisation's (1998) (WHO Health Promotion Glossary. WHO Collaborating Centre for Health Promotion, Department of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Sydney, NSW) definition of settings approaches to health promotion as those focused on modifying settings' structure and nature. A rapid literature review was undertaken in the period June-August 2014, combining a systematically conducted search of two major databases with targeted searches. The review focused on identifying what works in settings approaches to address the social determinants of health inequities, using Fair Foundations: the VicHealth framework for health equity. This depicts the social determinants of health inequities as three layers of influence, and entry points for action to promote health equity. The evidence review identified work in 12 settings (cities; communities and neighbourhoods; educational; healthcare; online; faith-based; sports; workplaces; prisons; and nightlife, green and temporary settings), and work at the socioeconomic, political and cultural context layer of the Fair Foundations framework (governance, legislation, regulation and policy). It located a relatively small amount of evidence that settings themselves are being changed in ways which address the social determinants of health inequities. Rather, many initiatives focus on individual behaviour change within settings. There is considerable potential for health promotion professionals to focus settings work more upstream and so replace or integrate individual approaches with those addressing daily living conditions and higher level structures, and a significant need for programmes to be evaluated for differential equity impacts and published to provide a more solid evidence base. PMID:26420808

  8. Sex and gender matter in health research: addressing health inequities in health research reporting.

    PubMed

    Gahagan, Jacqueline; Gray, Kimberly; Whynacht, Ardath

    2015-01-01

    Attention to the concepts of 'sex' and 'gender' is increasingly being recognized as contributing to better science through an augmented understanding of how these factors impact on health inequities and related health outcomes. However, the ongoing lack of conceptual clarity in how sex and gender constructs are used in both the design and reporting of health research studies remains problematic. Conceptual clarity among members of the health research community is central to ensuring the appropriate use of these concepts in a manner that can advance our understanding of the sex- and gender-based health implications of our research findings. During the past twenty-five years much progress has been made in reducing both sex and gender disparities in clinical research and, to a significant albeit lesser extent, in basic science research. Why, then, does there remain a lack of uptake of sex- and gender-specific reporting of health research findings in many health research journals? This question, we argue, has significant health equity implications across all pillars of health research, from biomedical and clinical research, through to health systems and population health.

  9. Policy approaches to address the social and environmental determinants of health inequity in Asia-pacific.

    PubMed

    Friel, Sharon; Loring, Belinda; Aungkasuvapala, Narongsakdi; Baum, Fran; Blaiklock, Alison; Chiang, Tung-Liang; Cho, Youngtae; Dakulala, Paison; Guo, Yan; Hashimoto, Hideki; Horton, Kellie; Jayasinghe, Saroj; Matheson, Don; Nguyen, Huong Thanh; Otto, Caleb; Rao, Mala; Reid, Paaparangi; Surjadi, Charles

    2012-11-01

    Asia Pacific is home to over 60% of the world's population and the fastest growing economies. Many of the leadership in the Asia Pacific region is becoming increasingly aware that improving the conditions for health would go a long way to sustaining economic prosperity in the region, as well as improving global and local health equity. There is no biological reason why males born in Cambodia can expect to live 23 years less than males born in Japan, or why females born in Tuvalu live 23 years shorter than females in New Zealand or why non-Indigenous Australian males live 12 years longer than Indigenous men. The nature and drivers of health inequities vary greatly among different social, cultural and geo-political contexts and effective solutions must take this into account. This paper utilizes the CSDH global recommendations as a basis for looking at the actions that are taking place to address the structural drivers and conditions of daily living that affect health inequities in the Asia Pacific context. While there are signs of action and hope, substantial challenges remain for health equity in Asia Pacific. The gains that have been made to date are not equally distributed and may be unsustainable as the world encounters new economic, social and environmental challenges. Tackling health inequities is a political imperative that requires leadership, political courage, social action, a sound evidence base and progressive public policy. PMID:23070757

  10. Addressing Health Inequities: Coronary Heart Disease Training within Learning Disabilities Services

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holly, Deirdre; Sharp, John

    2014-01-01

    People with learning disabilities are at increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). Research suggests this may be due to inequalities in health status and inequities in the way health services respond to need. Little is known about the most effective way to improve health outcomes for people with learning disabilities. A previously developed…

  11. Inequality aversion, health inequalities and health achievement.

    PubMed

    Wagstaff, Adam

    2002-07-01

    This paper addresses two issues. The first is how health inequalities can be measured in such a way as to take into account policymakers' attitudes towards inequality. The Gini coefficient and the related concentration index embody one particular set of value judgements. By generalising these indices, alternative sets of value judgements can be reflected. The other issue addressed is how information on health inequality can be used together with information on the mean of the relevant distribution to obtain an overall measure of health "achievement". PMID:12146594

  12. Addressing racial inequities in health care: civil rights monitoring and report cards.

    PubMed

    Smith, D B

    1998-02-01

    Large racial inequities in health care use continue to be reported, raising concerns about discrimination. Historically, the health system, with its professionally dominated, autonomous, voluntary organizational structure, has presented special challenges to civil rights efforts. De jure racial segregation in the United States gave way to a period of aggressive litigation and enforcement from 1954 until 1968 and then to the current period of relative inactivity. A combination of factors--declining federal resources and organizational capacity to address more subtle forms of discriminatory practices in health care settings, increasingly restrictive interpretations by the courts, and the lack of any systematic mechanisms for the statistical monitoring of providers--offers little assurance that discrimination does not continue to play a role in accounting for discrepancies in use. The current rapid transformation of health care into integrated delivery systems driven by risk-based financing presents both new opportunities and new threats. Adequate regulation, markets, and management for such systems impose new requirements for comparative systematic statistical assessment of performance. My conclusion illustrates ways that current "report card" approaches to monitoring performance of such systems could be used to monitor, correct, and build trust in equitable treatment.

  13. Assessing Opinions in Community Leadership Networks to Address Health Inequalities: A Case Study from Project IMPACT

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCauley, M. P.; Ramanadhan, S.; Viswanath, K.

    2015-01-01

    This study demonstrates a novel approach that those engaged in promoting social change in health can use to analyze community power, mobilize it and enhance community capacity to reduce health inequalities. We used community reconnaissance methods to select and interview 33 participants from six leadership sectors in "Milltown", the New…

  14. Equity-focused health impact assessment: A tool to assist policy makers in addressing health inequalities

    SciTech Connect

    Simpson, Sarah . E-mail: sarah.simpson@unsw.edu.au; Mahoney, Mary; Harris, Elizabeth; Aldrich, Rosemary; Stewart-Williams, Jenny

    2005-10-15

    In Australasia (Australia and New Zealand) the use of health impact assessment (HIA) as a tool for improved policy development is comparatively new. The public health workforce do not routinely assess the potential health and equity impacts of proposed policies or programs. The Australasian Collaboration for Health Equity Impact Assessment was funded to develop a strategic framework for equity-focused HIA (EFHIA) with the intent of strengthening the ways in which equity is addressed in each step of HIA. The collaboration developed a draft framework for EFHIA that mirrored, but modified the commonly accepted steps of HIA; tested the draft framework in six different health service delivery settings; analysed the feedback about application of the draft EFHIA framework and modified it accordingly. The strategic framework shows promise in providing a systematic process for identifying potential differential health impacts and assessing the extent to which these are avoidable and unfair. This paper presents the EFHIA framework and discusses some of the issues that arose in the case study sites undertaking equity-focused HIA.

  15. Addressing indigenous health workforce inequities: A literature review exploring 'best' practice for recruitment into tertiary health programmes

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Addressing the underrepresentation of indigenous health professionals is recognised internationally as being integral to overcoming indigenous health inequities. This literature review aims to identify 'best practice' for recruitment of indigenous secondary school students into tertiary health programmes with particular relevance to recruitment of Māori within a New Zealand context. Methodology/methods A Kaupapa Māori Research (KMR) methodological approach was utilised to review literature and categorise content via: country; population group; health profession ffocus; research methods; evidence of effectiveness; and discussion of barriers. Recruitment activities are described within five broad contexts associated with the recruitment pipeline: Early Exposure, Transitioning, Retention/Completion, Professional Workforce Development, and Across the total pipeline. Results A total of 70 articles were included. There is a lack of published literature specific to Māori recruitment and a limited, but growing, body of literature focused on other indigenous and underrepresented minority populations. The literature is primarily descriptive in nature with few articles providing evidence of effectiveness. However, the literature clearly frames recruitment activity as occurring across a pipeline that extends from secondary through to tertiary education contexts and in some instances vocational (post-graduate) training. Early exposure activities encourage students to achieve success in appropriate school subjects, address deficiencies in careers advice and offer tertiary enrichment opportunities. Support for students to transition into and within health professional programmes is required including bridging/foundation programmes, admission policies/quotas and institutional mission statements demonstrating a commitment to achieving equity. Retention/completion support includes academic and pastoral interventions and institutional changes to ensure safer

  16. Addressing inequalities in oral health in India: need for skill mix in the dental workforce

    PubMed Central

    Mathur, Manu Raj; Singh, Ankur; Watt, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Dentistry has always been an under-resourced profession. There are three main issues that dentistry is facing in the modern era. Firstly, how to rectify the widely acknowledged geographical imbalance in the demand and supply of dental personnel, secondly, how to provide access to primary dental care to maximum number of people, and thirdly, how to achieve both of these aims within the financial restraints imposed by the central and state governments. The trends of oral diseases have changed significantly in the last 20 years. The two of the most common oral diseases that affect a majority of the population worldwide, namely dental caries and periodontitis, have been proved to be entirely preventable. Even for life-threatening oral diseases like oral cancer, the best possible available treatment is prevention. There is a growing consensus that appropriate skill mix can prove very beneficial in providing these preventive dental care services to the public and aid in achieving the goal of universal oral health coverage. Professions complementary to dentistry (PCD) have been found to be effective in reducing inequalities in oral health, improving access and spreading the messages of health promotion across entire spectrum of socio-economic hierarchy in various studies conducted globally. This commentary provides a review of the effectiveness of skill mix in dentistry and a reflection on how this can be beneficial in achieving universal oral health care in India. PMID:25949967

  17. Addressing inequities in healthy eating.

    PubMed

    Friel, Sharon; Hattersley, Libby; Ford, Laura; O'Rourke, Kerryn

    2015-09-01

    What, when, where and how much people eat is influenced by a complex mix of factors at societal, community and individual levels. These influences operate both directly through the food system and indirectly through political, economic, social and cultural pathways that cause social stratification and influence the quality of conditions in which people live their lives. These factors are the social determinants of inequities in healthy eating. This paper provides an overview of the current evidence base for addressing these determinants and for the promotion of equity in healthy eating. PMID:26420812

  18. Addressing gender inequalities to improve the sexual and reproductive health and wellbeing of women living with HIV

    PubMed Central

    Amin, Avni

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Globally, women constitute 50% of all persons living with HIV. Gender inequalities are a key driver of women's vulnerabilities to HIV. This paper looks at how these structural factors shape specific behaviours and outcomes related to the sexual and reproductive health of women living with HIV. Discussion There are several pathways by which gender inequalities shape the sexual and reproductive health and wellbeing of women living with HIV. First, gender norms that privilege men's control over women and violence against women inhibit women's ability to practice safer sex, make reproductive decisions based on their own fertility preferences and disclose their HIV status. Second, women's lack of property and inheritance rights and limited access to formal employment makes them disproportionately vulnerable to food insecurity and its consequences. This includes compromising their adherence to antiretroviral therapy and increasing their vulnerability to transactional sex. Third, with respect to stigma and discrimination, women are more likely to be blamed for bringing HIV into the family, as they are often tested before men. In several settings, healthcare providers violate the reproductive rights of women living with HIV in relation to family planning and in denying them care. Lastly, a number of countries have laws that criminalize HIV transmission, which specifically impact women living with HIV who may be reluctant to disclose because of fears of violence and other negative consequences. Conclusions Addressing gender inequalities is central to improving the sexual and reproductive health outcomes and more broadly the wellbeing of women living with HIV. Programmes that go beyond a narrow biomedical/clinical approach and address the social and structural context of women's lives can also maximize the benefits of HIV prevention, treatment, care and support. PMID:26643464

  19. Local Health Departments’ Activities to Address Health Disparities and Inequities: Are We Moving in the Right Direction?

    PubMed Central

    Shah, Gulzar H.; Sheahan, John P.

    2015-01-01

    Context: Health disparities are among the critical public health challenges. Objectives: To analyze the extent to which local health departments (LHDs) perform activities for addressing health disparities, changes in proportion of LHDs’ performing those activities since 2005, and factors associated with variation in such engagement. Methods: We used the 2013 National Profile of LHDs Survey to perform Logistic Regression of activities LHDs performed to address health disparities. Results: About 20 percent of LHDs did not perform any activity to address health disparities. Significant decreases occurred since 2005 in the proportion of LHDs that performed health disparity reduction/elimination activities for four activities. LHD characteristics significantly associated (p≤0.05) with the increased likelihood of performing activities to address health disparities were: recent completion of community health assessment, community health improvement plan and agency wide strategic plan. Other significant positive impacts on such activities included per capita expenditures, local governance, having one or more local boards of health, larger population size and metropolitan status of the LHD jurisdiction. Conclusions: Reduced infrastructural capacity of LHDs has resulted in fewer LHDs addressing health disparities in their jurisdictions. LHD characteristics associated with higher performance of activities for health disparity reduction identified by this research have important policy implications. PMID:26703693

  20. Why reduce health inequalities?

    PubMed Central

    Woodward, A.; Kawachi, I.

    2000-01-01

    It is well known that social, cultural and economic factors cause substantial inequalities in health. Should we strive to achieve a more even share of good health, beyond improving the average health status of the population? We examine four arguments for the reduction of health inequalities.
1 Inequalities are unfair.
Inequalities in health are undesirable to the extent that they are unfair, or unjust. Distinguishing between health inequalities and health inequities can be contentious. Our view is that inequalities become "unfair" when poor health is itself the consequence of an unjust distribution of the underlying social determinants of health (for example, unequal opportunities in education or employment).
2 Inequalities affect everyone.
Conditions that lead to marked health disparities are detrimental to all members of society. Some types of health inequalities have obvious spillover effects on the rest of society, for example, the spread of infectious diseases, the consequences of alcohol and drug misuse, or the occurrence of violence and crime.
3 Inequalities are avoidable.
Disparities in health are avoidable to the extent that they stem from identifiable policy options exercised by governments, such as tax policy, regulation of business and labour, welfare benefits and health care funding. It follows that health inequalities are, in principle, amenable to policy interventions. A government that cares about improving the health of the population ought therefore to incorporate considerations of the health impact of alternative options in its policy setting process.
3 Interventions to reduce health inequalities are cost effective.
Public health programmes that reduce health inequalities can also be cost effective. The case can be made to give priority to such programmes (for example, improving access to cervical cancer screening in low income women) on efficiency grounds. On the other hand, few programmes designed to reduce health inequalities

  1. Addressing oral health disparities, inequity in access and workforce issues in a developing country.

    PubMed

    Singh, Abhinav; Purohit, Bharathi M

    2013-10-01

    The health sector challenges in India like those in other low and middle income countries are formidable. India has almost one-third of the world's dental schools. However, provisions of oral health-care services are few in rural parts of India where the majority of the Indian population resides. Disparities exist between the oral health status in urban and rural areas. The present unequal system of mainly private practice directed towards a minority of the population and based on reparative services needs to be modified. National oral health policy needs to be implemented as a priority, with an emphasis on strengthening dental care services under public health facilities. A fast-changing demographic profile and its implications needs to be considered while planning for the future oral health-care workforce. Current oral health status in developing countries, including India, is a result of government public health policies, not lack of dentists. The aim of the article is to discuss pertinent issues relating to oral health disparities, equity in health-care access, dental workforce planning and quality concerns pertaining to the present-day dental education and practices in India, which have implications for other developing countries. PMID:24074015

  2. The Good Food Junction: a Community-Based Food Store Intervention to Address Nutritional Health Inequities

    PubMed Central

    Muhajarine, Nazeem; Ridalls, Tracy; Abonyi, Sylvia; Vatanparast, Hassan; Whiting, Susan; Walker, Ryan

    2016-01-01

    Background This is a 2-year study to assess the early impacts of a new grocery store intervention in a former food desert. Objective The purpose of the study is to understand the early health effects of the introduction of a large-scale food and nutrition-focused community-based population health intervention, the Good Food Junction (GFJ) Cooperative Store, in a geographically bounded group of socially disadvantaged neighborhoods (the “core neighborhoods”) in a midsized Canadian city. The GFJ grocery store was tasked with improving the access of residents to healthy, affordable food. The 5 research questions are: (1) What is the awareness and perception of the GFJ store among residents of the core neighborhoods? (2) Are there differences in awareness and perception among those who do and do not shop at the GFJ? (3) Will healthy food purchasing at the GFJ by residents of the core neighborhoods change over time, and what purchases are these individuals making at this store? (4) What early impact(s) will the GFJ have on key health-related outcomes (such as household food security status, vegetable and fruit intake, key aspects of self-reported mental health, self-reported health)? and (5) Are the effects of the intervention seen for specific vulnerable population groups, such as Aboriginal people, seniors (65 years old or older) and new immigrants (settled in Saskatoon for less than 5 years)? Methods The research project examined initial impacts of the GFJ on the health of the residents in surrounding neighborhoods through a door-to-door cross-sectional survey of food access and household demographics; an examination of GFJ sales data by location of shoppers' residences; and a 1-year, 3-time-point longitudinal study of self-reported health of GFJ shoppers. Results Analyses are on-going, but preliminary results show that shoppers are using the store for its intended purpose, which is to improve access to healthy food in a former food desert. Conclusions To our

  3. Network of communities in the fight against AIDS: local actions to address health inequities and promote health in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Edmundo, Kátia; Guimarães, Wanda; Vasconcelos, Maria do Socorro; Baptista, Ana Paula; Becker, Daniel

    2005-01-01

    When combined with major social inequities, the AIDS epidemic in Brazil becomes much more complex and requires effective and participatory community-based interventions. This article describes the experience of a civil society organisation, the Centre for Health Promotion (CEDAPS), in the slum communities (favelas) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Using a community-based participatory approach, 55 community organisations were mobilised to develop local actions to address the increasing social vulnerability to HIV/AIDS of people living in squatter communities. This was done through on-going prevention initiatives based on the local culture and developed by a Network of Communities. The community movement has created a sense of "ownership" of social actions. The fight against AIDS has been a mobilising factor in engaging and organising communities and has contributed to raising awareness of health rights. Local actions included targeting the determinants of local vulnerability, as suggested by health promotion workers.

  4. Health Inequality and Careers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robertson, Peter J.

    2014-01-01

    Structural explanations of career choice and development are well established. Socioeconomic inequality represents a powerful factor shaping career trajectories and economic outcomes achieved by individuals. However, a robust and growing body of evidence demonstrates a strong link between socioeconomic inequality and health outcomes. Work is a key…

  5. Discrimination and health inequities.

    PubMed

    Krieger, Nancy

    2014-01-01

    In 1999, only 20 studies in the public health literature employed instruments to measure self-reported experiences of discrimination. Fifteen years later, the number of empirical investigations on discrimination and health easily exceeds 500, with these studies increasingly global in scope and focused on major types of discrimination variously involving race/ethnicity, indigenous status, immigrant status, gender, sexuality, disability, and age, separately and in combination. And yet, as I also document, even as the number of investigations has dramatically expanded, the scope remains narrow: studies remain focused primarily on interpersonal discrimination, and scant research investigates the health impacts of structural discrimination, a gap consonant with the limited epidemiologic research on political systems and population health. Accordingly, to help advance the state of the field, this updated review article: (a) briefly reviews definitions of discrimination, illustrated with examples from the United States; (b) discusses theoretical insights useful for conceptualizing how discrimination can become embodied and produce health inequities, including via distortion of scientific knowledge; (c) concisely summarizes extant evidence--both robust and inconsistent--linking discrimination and health; and (d) addresses several key methodological controversies and challenges, including the need for careful attention to domains, pathways, level, and spatiotemporal scale, in historical context. PMID:25626224

  6. Framing a Transdisciplinary Research Agenda in Health Education to Address Health Disparities and Social Inequities: A Road Map for SOPHE Action

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gambescia, Stephen F.; Woodhouse, Lynn D.; Auld, M. Elaine; Green, B. Lee; Quinn, Sandra Crouse; Airhihenbuwa, Collins O.

    2006-01-01

    SOPHE leaders continue to challenge us to be true to the call for an "open society." SOPHE has supported the Healthy People 2010 goal of eliminating health disparities through its Strategic Plan. SOPHE held an Inaugural Health Education Research Disparities Summit, Health Disparities and Social Inequities: Framing a Transdisciplinary Research…

  7. Addressing Inequities in Urban Health: Do Decision-Makers Have the Data They Need? Report from the Urban Health Data Special Session at International Conference on Urban Health Dhaka 2015.

    PubMed

    Elsey, H; Thomson, D R; Lin, R Y; Maharjan, U; Agarwal, S; Newell, J

    2016-06-01

    Rapid and uncontrolled urbanisation across low and middle-income countries is leading to ever expanding numbers of urban poor, defined here as slum dwellers and the homeless. It is estimated that 828 million people are currently living in slum conditions. If governments, donors and NGOs are to respond to these growing inequities they need data that adequately represents the needs of the urban poorest as well as others across the socio-economic spectrum.We report on the findings of a special session held at the International Conference on Urban Health, Dhaka 2015. We present an overview of the need for data on urban health for planning and allocating resources to address urban inequities. Such data needs to provide information on differences between urban and rural areas nationally, between and within urban communities. We discuss the limitations of data most commonly available to national and municipality level government, donor and NGO staff. In particular we assess, with reference to the WHO's Urban HEART tool, the challenges in the design of household surveys in understanding urban health inequities.We then present two novel approaches aimed at improving the information on the health of the urban poorest. The first uses gridded population sampling techniques within the design and implementation of household surveys and the second adapts Urban HEART into a participatory approach which enables slum residents to assess indicators whilst simultaneously planning the response. We argue that if progress is to be made towards inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities, as articulated in Sustainable Development Goal 11, then understanding urban health inequities is a vital pre-requisite to an effective response by governments, donors, NGOs and communities.

  8. Addressing Inequities in Urban Health: Do Decision-Makers Have the Data They Need? Report from the Urban Health Data Special Session at International Conference on Urban Health Dhaka 2015.

    PubMed

    Elsey, H; Thomson, D R; Lin, R Y; Maharjan, U; Agarwal, S; Newell, J

    2016-06-01

    Rapid and uncontrolled urbanisation across low and middle-income countries is leading to ever expanding numbers of urban poor, defined here as slum dwellers and the homeless. It is estimated that 828 million people are currently living in slum conditions. If governments, donors and NGOs are to respond to these growing inequities they need data that adequately represents the needs of the urban poorest as well as others across the socio-economic spectrum.We report on the findings of a special session held at the International Conference on Urban Health, Dhaka 2015. We present an overview of the need for data on urban health for planning and allocating resources to address urban inequities. Such data needs to provide information on differences between urban and rural areas nationally, between and within urban communities. We discuss the limitations of data most commonly available to national and municipality level government, donor and NGO staff. In particular we assess, with reference to the WHO's Urban HEART tool, the challenges in the design of household surveys in understanding urban health inequities.We then present two novel approaches aimed at improving the information on the health of the urban poorest. The first uses gridded population sampling techniques within the design and implementation of household surveys and the second adapts Urban HEART into a participatory approach which enables slum residents to assess indicators whilst simultaneously planning the response. We argue that if progress is to be made towards inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities, as articulated in Sustainable Development Goal 11, then understanding urban health inequities is a vital pre-requisite to an effective response by governments, donors, NGOs and communities. PMID:27184570

  9. Health Inequalities Policy in Korea: Current Status and Future Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Sang-il

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, health inequalities have become an important public health concern and the subject of both research and policy attention in Korea. Government reports, as well as many epidemiological studies, have provided evidence that a wide range of health outcomes and health-related behaviors are socioeconomically patterned, and that the magnitude of health inequalities is even increasing. However, except for the revised Health Plan 2010 targets for health equity, few government policies have explicitly addressed health inequalities. Although a number of economic and social policies may have had an impact on health inequalities, such impact has scarcely been evaluated. In this review, we describe the current status of research and policy on health inequalities in Korea. We also suggest future challenges of approaches and policies to reduce health inequalities and highlight the active and intensive engagement of many policy sectors and good evidence for interventions that will make meaningful reduction of health inequalities possible. PMID:22661869

  10. Common risk factor approach to address socioeconomic inequality in the oral health of preschool children – a prospective cohort study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Dental caries remains the most prevalent chronic condition in children and a major contributor to poor general health. There is ample evidence of a skewed distribution of oral health, with a small proportion of children in the population bearing the majority of the burden of the disease. This minority group is comprised disproportionately of socioeconomically disadvantaged children. An in-depth longitudinal study is needed to better understand the determinants of child oral health, in order to support effective evidence-based policies and interventions in improving child oral health. The aim of the Study of Mothers’ and Infants’ Life Events Affecting Oral Health (SMILE) project is to identify and evaluate the relative importance and timing of critical factors that shape the oral health of young children and then to seek to evaluate those factors in their inter-relationship with socioeconomic influences. Methods/Design This investigation will apply an observational prospective study design to a cohort of socioeconomically-diverse South Australian newborns and their mothers, intensively following these dyads as the children grow to toddler age. Mothers of newborn children will be invited to participate in the study in the early post-partum period. At enrolment, data will be collected on parental socioeconomic status, mothers’ general and dental health conditions, details of the pregnancy, infant feeding practice and parental health behaviours and practices. Data on diet and feeding practices, oral health behaviours and practices, and dental visiting patterns will be collected at 3, 6, 12 and 24 months of age. When children turn 24-30 months, the children and their mothers/primary care givers will be invited to an oral examination to record oral health status. Anthropometric assessment will also be conducted. Discussion This prospective cohort study will examine a wide range of determinants influencing child oral health and related general conditions

  11. Addressing Inequalities in Health: New Directions in Midwifery Education and Practice. Researching Professional Education Research Reports Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Angie; Lockey, Rachael; Henwood, Flis; Pankhurst, Francesca; Hall, Valerie; Sommerville, Fiona

    This report addresses key questions concerning the effectiveness of midwifery education in preparing midwives to meet the needs of women from minority or disadvantaged groups in England. Chapter 1 sets out the methodological context within which the work was undertaken and provides an overview of data sources and sample sizes. Chapters 3 and 4…

  12. Tackling health inequalities: moving theory to action

    PubMed Central

    Signal, Louise; Martin, Jennifer; Reid, Papaarangi; Carroll, Christopher; Howden-Chapman, Philippa; Ormsby, Vera Keefe; Richards, Ruth; Robson, Bridget; Wall, Teresa

    2007-01-01

    Background This paper reports on health inequalities awareness-raising workshops conducted with senior New Zealand health sector staff as part of the Government's goal of reducing inequalities in health, education, employment and housing. Methods The workshops were based on a multi-method needs assessment with senior staff in key health institutions. The workshops aimed to increase the knowledge and skills of health sector staff to act on, and advocate for, eliminating inequalities in health. They were practical, evidence-based, and action oriented and took a social approach to the causes of inequalities in health. The workshops used ethnicity as a case study and explored racism as a driver of inequalities. They focused on the role of institutionalized racism, or racism that is built into health sector institutions. Institutional theory provided a framework for participants to analyse how their institutions create and maintain inequalities and how they can act to change this. Results Participants identified a range of institutional mechanisms that promote inequalities and a range of ways to address them including: undertaking further training, using Māori (the indigenous people) models of health in policy-making, increasing Māori participation and partnership in decision making, strengthening sector relationships with iwi (tribes), funding and supporting services provided 'by Māori for Māori', ensuring a strategic approach to intersectoral work, encouraging stronger community involvement in the work of the institution, requiring all evaluations to assess impact on inequalities, and requiring the sector to report on progress in addressing health inequalities. The workshops were rated highly by participants, who indicated increased commitment to tackle inequalities as a result of the training. Discussion Government and sector leadership were critical to the success of the workshops and subsequent changes in policy and practice. The use of locally adapted equity

  13. Addressing inequities in access to primary health care: lessons for the training of health care professionals from a regional medical school.

    PubMed

    Larkins, Sarah; Sen Gupta, Tarun; Evans, Rebecca; Murray, Richard; Preston, Robyn

    2011-01-01

    Attention to the inequitable distribution and limited access to primary health care resources is key to addressing the priority health needs of underserved populations in rural, remote and outer metropolitan areas. There is little high-quality evidence about improving access to quality primary health care services for underserved groups, particularly in relation to geographic barriers, and limited discussion about the training implications of reforms to improve access. To progress equity in access to primary health care services, health professional education institutions need to work with both the health sector and policy makers to address issues of workforce mix, recruitment and retention, and new models of primary health care delivery. This requires a fundamental shift in focus from these institutions and the health sector, to each view themselves as partners in an integrated teaching, research and service-oriented health system. This paper discusses the challenges and opportunities for primary health care professionals, educators and the health sector in providing quality teaching and clinical experiences for increasing numbers of health professionals as a result of the reform agenda. It then outlines some practical strategies based on theory and evolving experience for dealing with some of these challenges and capitalising on opportunities.

  14. Addressing inequities in access to primary health care: lessons for the training of health care professionals from a regional medical school.

    PubMed

    Larkins, Sarah; Sen Gupta, Tarun; Evans, Rebecca; Murray, Richard; Preston, Robyn

    2011-01-01

    Attention to the inequitable distribution and limited access to primary health care resources is key to addressing the priority health needs of underserved populations in rural, remote and outer metropolitan areas. There is little high-quality evidence about improving access to quality primary health care services for underserved groups, particularly in relation to geographic barriers, and limited discussion about the training implications of reforms to improve access. To progress equity in access to primary health care services, health professional education institutions need to work with both the health sector and policy makers to address issues of workforce mix, recruitment and retention, and new models of primary health care delivery. This requires a fundamental shift in focus from these institutions and the health sector, to each view themselves as partners in an integrated teaching, research and service-oriented health system. This paper discusses the challenges and opportunities for primary health care professionals, educators and the health sector in providing quality teaching and clinical experiences for increasing numbers of health professionals as a result of the reform agenda. It then outlines some practical strategies based on theory and evolving experience for dealing with some of these challenges and capitalising on opportunities. PMID:22112705

  15. Modelling health, income and income inequality: the impact of income inequality on health and health inequality.

    PubMed

    Wildman, John

    2003-07-01

    A framework is developed to analyse the impact of the distribution of income on individual health and health inequality, with individual health modelled as a function of income and the distribution of income. It is demonstrated that the impact of income inequality can generate non-concave health production functions resulting in a non-concave health production possibility frontier. In this context, the impact of different health policies are considered and it is argued that if the distribution of income affects individual health, any policy aimed at equalising health, which does not account for income inequality, will lead to unequal distributions of health. This is an important development given current UK government attention to reducing health inequality.

  16. Poverty and health sector inequalities.

    PubMed Central

    Wagstaff, Adam

    2002-01-01

    Poverty and ill-health are intertwined. Poor countries tend to have worse health outcomes than better-off countries. Within countries, poor people have worse health outcomes than better-off people. This association reflects causality running in both directions: poverty breeds ill-health, and ill-health keeps poor people poor. The evidence on inequalities in health between the poor and non-poor and on the consequences for impoverishment and income inequality associated with health care expenses is discussed in this article. An outline is given of what is known about the causes of inequalities and about the effectiveness of policies intended to combat them. It is argued that too little is known about the impacts of such policies, notwithstanding a wealth of measurement techniques and considerable evidence on the extent and causes of inequalities. PMID:11953787

  17. [Policies to reduce health inequalities].

    PubMed

    Borrell, Carme; Artazcoz, Lucía

    2008-01-01

    This paper reviews policies to reduce social inequalities in health and presents some examples. Previously it presents the model on social determinants of health inequalities. The model described on the determinants of health inequalities is used by the Commission on Social Determinants of Health of the World Health Organisation that contains three main elements: the socio-economic and political context, socioeconomic status and intermediary factors. It describes 10 principles to keep in mind to launch interventions aimed at reducing inequalities in health and describes various policies depending on different "entry points" considered in the conceptual model. Finally we present two examples: The Public Health Policy of Sweden and the programme "Barrio Adentro" in Venezuela.

  18. Cultural capital and social inequality in health.

    PubMed

    Abel, T

    2008-07-01

    Economic and social resources are known to contribute to the unequal distribution of health outcomes. Culture-related factors such as normative beliefs, knowledge and behaviours have also been shown to be associated with health status. The role and function of cultural resources in the unequal distribution of health is addressed. Drawing on the work of French Sociologist Pierre Bourdieu, the concept of cultural capital for its contribution to the current understanding of social inequalities in health is explored. It is suggested that class related cultural resources interact with economic and social capital in the social structuring of people's health chances and choices. It is concluded that cultural capital is a key element in the behavioural transformation of social inequality into health inequality. New directions for empirical research on the interplay between economic, social and cultural capital are outlined.

  19. [Economic growth and health inequities].

    PubMed

    Tapia Granados, José A

    2013-01-01

    This essay reviews the relation between health inequities and economic growth. The general meaning of these and ancillary concepts (economic development, health inequalities) is briefly reviewed. Some studies illustrating different hypotheses on the long-run historical evolution of health inequalities are presented, and three case studies -the United States in 1920-1940 and in recent years, Finland during the expansion of the 1980s and the recession of the 1990s- are reviewed to demonstrate the evolution of health inequalities during the periods of expansion and recession in markets economies that conform to the so-called business cycle. Health inequities between ethnic groups and social classes are often found in modern societies, and some of these disparities seem to be widening. Periods of economic expansion do not seem favorable for the lessening of health inequalities. Contrarily, and counter-intuitively, evidence rather suggests that it is during periods of recession that gaps in health between privileged and disadvantaged groups tend to narrow.

  20. Health inequalities and social group differences: what should we measure?

    PubMed Central

    Murray, C. J.; Gakidou, E. E.; Frenk, J.

    1999-01-01

    Both health inequalities and social group health differences are important aspects of measuring population health. Despite widespread recognition of their magnitude in many high- and low-income countries, there is considerable debate about the meaning and measurement of health inequalities, social group health differences and inequities. The lack of standard definitions, measurement strategies and indicators has and will continue to limit comparisons--between and within countries, and over time--of health inequalities, and perhaps more importantly comparative analyses of their determinants. Such comparative work, however, will be essential to find effective policies for governments to reduce health inequalities. This article addresses the question of whether we should be measuring health inequalities or social group health differences. To help clarify the strengths and weaknesses of these two approaches, we review some of the major arguments for and against each of them. PMID:10444876

  1. Ethics and governance of global health inequalities

    PubMed Central

    Ruger, J P

    2006-01-01

    Background A world divided by health inequalities poses ethical challenges for global health. International and national responses to health disparities must be rooted in ethical values about health and its distribution; this is because ethical claims have the power to motivate, delineate principles, duties and responsibilities, and hold global and national actors morally responsible for achieving common goals. Theories of justice are necessary to define duties and obligations of institutions and actors in reducing inequalities. The problem is the lack of a moral framework for solving problems of global health justice. Aim To study why global health inequalities are morally troubling, why efforts to reduce them are morally justified, how they should be measured and evaluated; how much priority disadvantaged groups should receive; and to delineate roles and responsibilities of national and international actors and institutions. Discussion and conclusions Duties and obligations of international and state actors in reducing global health inequalities are outlined. The ethical principles endorsed include the intrinsic value of health to well‐being and equal respect for all human life, the importance of health for individual and collective agency, the concept of a shortfall from the health status of a reference group, and the need for a disproportionate effort to help disadvantaged groups. This approach does not seek to find ways in which global and national actors address global health inequalities by virtue of their self‐interest, national interest, collective security or humanitarian assistance. It endorses the more robust concept of “human flourishing” and the desire to live in a world where all people have the capability to be healthy. Unlike cosmopolitan theory, this approach places the role of the nation‐state in the forefront with primary, though not sole, moral responsibility. Rather shared health governance is essential for delivering health equity

  2. [Inequalities in health in Mexico].

    PubMed

    Linares-Pérez, Nivaldo; López-Arellano, Oliva

    2012-01-01

    This study presents a critical approach on health sector reform in Mexico and its impact on access and equity in state health systems. We discuss the main strategies adopted and made an assessment of its contribution to achieving equity in health, using socioeconomic indicators of health services and interventions for two moments, 1990 y 2002. We conclude that the dynamics of deepening inequalities in the period and the transformation of state health systems do not contribute to the achievement of equity in access.

  3. STRUCTURAL RACISM AND HEALTH INEQUITIES

    PubMed Central

    Gee, Gilbert C.; Ford, Chandra L.

    2014-01-01

    Racial minorities bear a disproportionate burden of morbidity and mortality. These inequities might be explained by racism, given the fact that racism has restricted the lives of racial minorities and immigrants throughout history. Recent studies have documented that individuals who report experiencing racism have greater rates of illnesses. While this body of research has been invaluable in advancing knowledge on health inequities, it still locates the experiences of racism at the individual level. Yet, the health of social groups is likely most strongly affected by structural, rather than individual, phenomena. The structural forms of racism and their relationship to health inequities remain under-studied. This article reviews several ways of conceptualizing structural racism, with a focus on social segregation, immigration policy, and intergenerational effects. Studies of disparities should more seriously consider the multiple dimensions of structural racism as fundamental causes of health disparities. PMID:25632292

  4. [Inequities in access to information and inequities in health].

    PubMed

    Filho, Alberto Pellegrini

    2002-01-01

    This piece presents evidence that inequities in information are an important determinant of health inequities and that eliminating these inequities in access to information, especially by using new information and communication technologies (ICTs), could represent a significant advance in terms of guaranteeing the right to health for all. The piece reviews the most important international scientific research findings on the determinants of the health of populations, emphasizing the role of socioeconomic inequities and of deteriorating social capital as factors that worsen health conditions. It is noteworthy that Latin America has both socioeconomic inequities and major sectors of the population living in poverty. Among the fundamental strategies for overcoming the inequalities and the poverty are greater participation by the poor in civic life and the strengthening of social capital. The contribution that the new ICTs could make to these strategies is analyzed, and the Virtual Health Library (VHL) is discussed. Coordinated by the Latin American and Caribbean Center on Health Sciences Information (BIREME), the VHL is a contribution by the Pan American Health Organization that takes advantage of the potential of ICTs to democratize information and knowledge and consequently promote equity in health. The "digital gap" is discussed as something that can produce inequity itself and also increase other inequities, including ones in health. Prospects are discussed for overcoming this gap, emphasizing the role that governments and international organizations should play in order to expand access to the global public good that information for social development is.

  5. [Inequities in access to information and inequities in health].

    PubMed

    Filho, Alberto Pellegrini

    2002-01-01

    This piece presents evidence that inequities in information are an important determinant of health inequities and that eliminating these inequities in access to information, especially by using new information and communication technologies (ICTs), could represent a significant advance in terms of guaranteeing the right to health for all. The piece reviews the most important international scientific research findings on the determinants of the health of populations, emphasizing the role of socioeconomic inequities and of deteriorating social capital as factors that worsen health conditions. It is noteworthy that Latin America has both socioeconomic inequities and major sectors of the population living in poverty. Among the fundamental strategies for overcoming the inequalities and the poverty are greater participation by the poor in civic life and the strengthening of social capital. The contribution that the new ICTs could make to these strategies is analyzed, and the Virtual Health Library (VHL) is discussed. Coordinated by the Latin American and Caribbean Center on Health Sciences Information (BIREME), the VHL is a contribution by the Pan American Health Organization that takes advantage of the potential of ICTs to democratize information and knowledge and consequently promote equity in health. The "digital gap" is discussed as something that can produce inequity itself and also increase other inequities, including ones in health. Prospects are discussed for overcoming this gap, emphasizing the role that governments and international organizations should play in order to expand access to the global public good that information for social development is. PMID:12162837

  6. A framework for measuring health inequity

    PubMed Central

    Asada, Y.

    2005-01-01

    Background: Health inequality has long attracted keen attention in the research and policy arena. While there may be various motivations to study health inequality, what distinguishes it as a topic is moral concern. Despite the importance of this moral interest, a theoretical and analytical framework for measuring health inequality acknowledging moral concerns remains to be established. Study objective: To propose a framework for measuring the moral or ethical dimension of health inequality—that is, health inequity. Design: Conceptual discussion. Conclusions: Measuring health inequity entails three steps: (1) defining when a health distribution becomes inequitable, (2) deciding on measurement strategies to operationalise a chosen concept of equity, and (3) quantifying health inequity information. For step (1) a variety of perspectives on health equity exist under two categories, health equity as equality in health, and health inequality as an indicator of general injustice in society. In step (2), when we are interested in health inequity, the choice of the measurement of health, the unit of time, and the unit of analysis in health inequity analysis should reflect moral considerations. In step (3) we must follow principles rather than convenience and consider six questions that arise when quantifying health inequity information. This proposed framework suggests various ways to conceptualise the moral dimension of health inequality and emphasises the logical consistency from conception to measurement. PMID:16020649

  7. Summarizing health inequalities in a Balanced Scorecard. Methodological considerations.

    PubMed

    Auger, Nathalie; Raynault, Marie-France

    2006-01-01

    The association between social determinants and health inequalities is well recognized. What are now needed are tools to assist in disseminating such information. This article describes how the Balanced Scorecard may be used for summarizing data on health inequalities. The process begins by selecting appropriate social groups and indicators, and is followed by the measurement of differences across person, place, or time. The next step is to decide whether to focus on absolute versus relative inequality. The last step is to determine the scoring method, including whether to address issues of depth of inequality.

  8. Summarizing health inequalities in a Balanced Scorecard. Methodological considerations.

    PubMed

    Auger, Nathalie; Raynault, Marie-France

    2006-01-01

    The association between social determinants and health inequalities is well recognized. What are now needed are tools to assist in disseminating such information. This article describes how the Balanced Scorecard may be used for summarizing data on health inequalities. The process begins by selecting appropriate social groups and indicators, and is followed by the measurement of differences across person, place, or time. The next step is to decide whether to focus on absolute versus relative inequality. The last step is to determine the scoring method, including whether to address issues of depth of inequality. PMID:17120870

  9. Ethnic minority health in Vietnam: a review exposing horizontal inequity

    PubMed Central

    Målqvist, Mats; Hoa, Dinh Thi Phuong; Liem, Nguyen Thanh; Thorson, Anna; Thomsen, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Background Equity in health is a pressing concern and reaching disadvantaged populations is necessary to close the inequity gap. To date, the discourse has predominately focussed on reaching the poor. At the same time and in addition to wealth, other structural determinants that influence health outcomes exist, one of which is ethnicity. Inequities based on group belongings are recognised as ‘horizontal’, as opposed to the more commonly used notion of ‘vertical’ inequity based on individual characteristics. Objective The aim of the present review is to highlight ethnicity as a source of horizontal inequity in health and to expose mechanisms that cause and maintain this inequity in Vietnam. Design Through a systematic search of available academic and grey literature, 49 publications were selected for review. Information was extracted on: a) quantitative measures of health inequities based on ethnicity and b) qualitative descriptions explaining potential reasons for ethnicity-based health inequities. Results Five main areas were identified: health-care-seeking and utilization, maternal and child health, nutrition, infectious diseases, and oral health and hygiene. Evidence suggests the presence of severe health inequity in health along ethnic lines in all these areas. Research evidence also offers explanations derived from both external and internal group dynamics to this inequity. It is reported that government policies and programs appear to be lacking in culturally adaptation and sensitivity, and examples of bad attitudes and discrimination from health staff toward minority persons were identified. In addition, traditions and patriarchal structures within ethnic minority groups were seen to contribute to the maintenance of harmful health behaviors within these groups. Conclusion Better understandings of the scope and pathways of horizontal inequities are required to address ethnic inequities in health. Awareness of ethnicity as a determinant of health, not

  10. Reproductive Health Assessment After Disasters: embedding a toolkit within the disaster management workforce to address health inequalities among Gulf-Coast women.

    PubMed

    Arosemena, Farah A; Fox, Laila; Lichtveld, Maureen Y

    2013-11-01

    Gulf Coast women are especially vulnerable to the effects of disaster and for many this vulnerability is compounded by existing poor health-related quality of life. Post-Hurricane Isaac, a baseline survey battery utilizing the Reproductive Health Assessment After Disasters (RHAD) Toolkit, the Medical Outcomes Study Social Support Survey, and the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale were used quantitatively to assess reproductive health risks, services, and outcomes and to explore the psychosocial effects of disaster among pregnant and postpartum women aged 18-45 years (N=300). The pilot study included trained community health workers and patient navigators to implement a community needs assessment in Southeast Louisiana. The community health navigation corps administered RHAD and the brief psychosocial battery to gain a closer understanding of post-disaster reproductive health needs. Findings demonstrate the importance of making a transition from patient navigation into disaster management in order to reduce fragmentation in health care systems and to implement innovative approaches in survey methodology.

  11. Income inequality and population health.

    PubMed

    Judge, K; Mulligan, J A; Benzeval, M

    1998-01-01

    A number of studies have suggested that inequalities in the distribution of income may be an important cause of variations in the average level of population health among rich industrial nations. However, what is missing from the debate so far is any systematic review of evidence about the relationship between different measures of income distribution and indicators of population health. This paper aims to bridge that gap. First, it summarizes the recent English language literature on this topic and illustrates the methodological problems that weaken the inferences that can be derived from it. Secondly, it presents new empirical estimates of the relationship between different measures of income distribution, infant mortality and life expectancy based on the most authoritative data published to date. In contrast to most earlier studies, we find very little support for the view that income inequality is associated with variations in average levels of national health in rich industrial countries. Some possible explanations for these differences are outlined.

  12. Global oral health inequalities: the view from a research funder.

    PubMed

    Garcia, I; Tabak, L A

    2011-05-01

    Despite impressive worldwide improvements in oral health, inequalities in oral health status among and within countries remain a daunting public health challenge. Oral health inequalities arise from a complex web of health determinants, including social, behavioral, economic, genetic, environmental, and health system factors. Eliminating these inequalities cannot be accomplished in isolation of oral health from overall health, or without recognizing that oral health is influenced at multiple individual, family, community, and health systems levels. For several reasons, this is an opportune time for global efforts targeted at reducing oral health inequalities. Global health is increasingly viewed not just as a humanitarian obligation, but also as a vehicle for health diplomacy and part of the broader mission to reduce poverty, build stronger economies, and strengthen global security. Despite the global economic recession, there are trends that portend well for support of global health efforts: increased globalization of research and development, growing investment from private philanthropy, an absolute growth of spending in research and innovation, and an enhanced interest in global health among young people. More systematic and far-reaching efforts will be required to address oral health inequalities through the engagement of oral health funders and sponsors of research, with partners from multiple public and private sectors. The oral health community must be "at the table" with other health disciplines and create opportunities for eliminating inequalities through collaborations that can harness both the intellectual and financial resources of multiple sectors and institutions.

  13. Global oral health inequalities: the view from a research funder.

    PubMed

    Garcia, I; Tabak, L A

    2011-05-01

    Despite impressive worldwide improvements in oral health, inequalities in oral health status among and within countries remain a daunting public health challenge. Oral health inequalities arise from a complex web of health determinants, including social, behavioral, economic, genetic, environmental, and health system factors. Eliminating these inequalities cannot be accomplished in isolation of oral health from overall health, or without recognizing that oral health is influenced at multiple individual, family, community, and health systems levels. For several reasons, this is an opportune time for global efforts targeted at reducing oral health inequalities. Global health is increasingly viewed not just as a humanitarian obligation, but also as a vehicle for health diplomacy and part of the broader mission to reduce poverty, build stronger economies, and strengthen global security. Despite the global economic recession, there are trends that portend well for support of global health efforts: increased globalization of research and development, growing investment from private philanthropy, an absolute growth of spending in research and innovation, and an enhanced interest in global health among young people. More systematic and far-reaching efforts will be required to address oral health inequalities through the engagement of oral health funders and sponsors of research, with partners from multiple public and private sectors. The oral health community must be "at the table" with other health disciplines and create opportunities for eliminating inequalities through collaborations that can harness both the intellectual and financial resources of multiple sectors and institutions. PMID:21490232

  14. Health Inequities: Evaluation of Two Paradigms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ashcroft, Rachelle

    2010-01-01

    Social work practice in health is shaped by underlying paradigms. To effectively target health inequities, practitioners need to consider appropriate paradigms. In this exploration of how six health paradigms shape theory and practice, the two health paradigms that most attended to health inequalities are social determinants of health and…

  15. Measuring socioeconomic health inequalities in presence of multiple categorical information.

    PubMed

    Makdissi, Paul; Yazbeck, Myra

    2014-03-01

    While many of the measurement approaches in health inequality measurement assume the existence of a ratio-scale variable, most of the health information available in population surveys is given in the form of categorical variables. Therefore, the well-known inequality indices may not always be readily applicable to measure health inequality as it may result in the arbitrariness of the health concentration index's value. In this paper, we address this problem by changing the dimension in which the categorical information is used. We therefore exploit the multi-dimensionality of this information, define a new ratio-scale health status variable and develop positional stochastic dominance conditions that can be implemented in a context of categorical variables. We also propose a parametric class of population health and socioeconomic health inequality indices. Finally we provide a twofold empirical illustration using the Joint Canada/United States Surveys of Health 2004 and the National Health Interview Survey 2010.

  16. Reducing global health inequalities. Part 1.

    PubMed

    Stuart, Kenneth; Soulsby, E J L

    2011-08-01

    This paper summarizes four UK reviews of socially stratified health inequalities that were undertaken during the past five decades. It describes the background of misplaced optimism and false hopes which characterized the UK's own record of health inequalities; the broken promises on debt cancellations which was the experience of developing countries. It describes why the UK's past leadership record in international health provides grounds for optimism for the future and for benefits for both developed and developing countries through the adoption of more collaborative approaches to global health than have characterized international relationships in the past. It recalls the enthusiasm generated in the UK, and internationally, by the establishment of the Global Commission on the Social Determinants of Health. It promotes the perception of health both as a global public good and as a developmental issue and why a focus on poverty is essential to the address of global health issues. It sees the designing of appropriate strategies and partnerships towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals as an important first step for achieving successful address to global public health issues. PMID:21816930

  17. Reducing global health inequalities. Part 1

    PubMed Central

    Stuart, Kenneth; Soulsby, EJL

    2011-01-01

    This paper summarizes four UK reviews of socially stratified health inequalities that were undertaken during the past five decades. It describes the background of misplaced optimism and false hopes which characterized the UK's own record of health inequalities; the broken promises on debt cancellations which was the experience of developing countries. It describes why the UK's past leadership record in international health provides grounds for optimism for the future and for benefits for both developed and developing countries through the adoption of more collaborative approaches to global health than have characterized international relationships in the past. It recalls the enthusiasm generated in the UK, and internationally, by the establishment of the Global Commission on the Social Determinants of Health. It promotes the perception of health both as a global public good and as a developmental issue and why a focus on poverty is essential to the address of global health issues. It sees the designing of appropriate strategies and partnerships towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals as an important first step for achieving successful address to global public health issues. PMID:21816930

  18. On measuring inequalities in health.

    PubMed Central

    Wolfson, M.; Rowe, G.

    2001-01-01

    In a recent series of papers, Murray et al. have put forward a number of important ideas regarding the measurement of inequalities in health. In this paper we agree with some of these ideas but draw attention to one key aspect of their approach--measuring inequalities on the basis of small area data--which is flawed. A numerical example is presented to illustrate the problem. An alternative approach drawing on longitudinal data is outlined, which preserves and enhances the most desirable aspects of their proposal. These include the use of a life course perspective, and the consideration of non-fatal health outcomes as well as the more usual information on mortality patterns. PMID:11436478

  19. Income-related health inequality in Canada.

    PubMed

    Humphries, K H; van Doorslaer, E

    2000-03-01

    This study uses data from the 1994 National Population Health Survey and applies the methods developed by Wagstaff and van Doorslaer (1994, measuring inequalities in health in the presence of multiple-category morbidity indicators. Health Economics 3, 281-291) to measure the degree of income-related inequality in self-reported health in Canada by means of concentration indices. It finds that significant inequalities in self-reported ill-health exist and favour the higher income groups--the higher the level of income, the better the level of self-assessed health. The analysis also indicates that lower income individuals are somewhat more likely to report their self-assessed health as poor or less-than-good than higher income groups, at the same level of a more 'objective' health indictor such as the McMaster Health Utility Index. The degree of inequality in 'subjective' health is slightly higher than in 'objective' health, but not significantly different. The degree of inequality in self-assessed health in Canada was found to be significantly higher than that reported by van Doorslaer et al. (1997, income related inequalities in health: some international comparisons, Journal of Health Economics 16, 93-112) for seven European countries, but not significantly different from the health inequality measured for the UK or the US. It also appears as if Canada's health inequality is higher than what would be expected on the basis of its income inequality.

  20. Income and health inequality across Canadian provinces.

    PubMed

    Safaei, Jalil

    2007-09-01

    This paper uses the aggregate data from the Public Use Microdata Files (PUMF) of Canadian National Population Health Survey to estimate income related health inequalities across the ten Canadian provinces. The unique features of the PUMF allow for a meaningful cross-provincial comparison of health indices and their measured inequalities. It concludes that health inequalities favouring the higher income people do exist in all provinces when health status is either self assessed or measured by the health utility index. Moreover, it finds considerable variations in measured health inequalities across the provinces with consistent rankings for certain provinces.

  1. Using a Health in All Policies Approach to Address Social Determinants of Sexually Transmitted Disease Inequities in the Context of Community Change and Redevelopment

    PubMed Central

    Fuller, Elizabeth; Branscomb, Jane; Cheung, Karen; Reed, Phillip Jackson; Wong, Naima; Henderson, Michael; Williams, Samantha

    2013-01-01

    Objectives We used a Health in All Policies (HiAP) framework to determine what data, policy, and community efficacy opportunities exist for improving sexual health and reducing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in an area surrounding an Army base undergoing redevelopment in Atlanta, Georgia. Methods We conducted a literature review, consulted with experts, mapped social determinants in the community, conducted key informant interviews with community leaders to explore policy solutions, used Photovoice with community members to identify neighborhood assets, and shared data with all stakeholder groups to solicit engagement for next steps. Results We identified the following HiAP-relevant determinants of STD inequities in the literature: education, employment, male incarceration, drug and alcohol marketing, and social capital. Quantitative data confirmed challenges in education, employment, and male incarceration in the area. Interviews identified policy opportunities such as educational funding ratios, Community Hire Agreements, code and law enforcement, addiction and mental health resources, lighting for safety, and a nonemergency public safety number. Photovoice participants identified community assets to protect including family-owned businesses, green spaces, gathering places, public transportation resources, historical sites, and architectural elements. Stakeholder feedback provided numerous opportunities for next steps. Conclusions This study contributes to the HiAP literature by providing an innovative mixed-methods design that locates social determinants of STDs within a geographic context, identifies policy solutions from local leaders, highlights community assets through the lens of place attachment, and engages stakeholders in identifying next steps. Findings from this study could inform other redevelopments, community-based studies of STDs, and HiAP efforts. PMID:24179283

  2. Does income inequality harm health? New cross-national evidence.

    PubMed

    Beckfield, Jason

    2004-09-01

    The provocative hypothesis that income inequality harms population health has sparked a large body of research, some of which has reported strong associations between income inequality and population health. Cross-national evidence is frequently cited in support of this important hypothesis, but the hypothesis remains controversial, and the cross-national work has been criticized for several methodological shortcomings. This study replicates previous work using a larger sample (692 observations from 115 countries over the 1947-1996 period), a wider range of statistical controls, and fixed-effects models that address heterogeneity bias. The relationship between health and inequality shrinks when controls are included. In fixed-effects models that capture unmeasured heterogeneity, the association between income inequality and health disappears. The null findings hold for two measures of income inequality: the Gini coefficient and the share of income received by the poorest quintile of the population. Analysis of a sample of wealthy countries also fails to support the hypothesis.

  3. Using Health Literacy in School to Overcome Inequalities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flecha, Ainhoa; Garcia, Rocio; Rudd, Rima

    2011-01-01

    Health literacy has firmly established the links between literacy skills and health outcomes and is subsequently considered a key strategy for improving the health of disadvantaged populations and addressing social inequality. However, current research findings for improving health literacy have primarily focused on adults and actions within…

  4. Strengthening health information systems to address health equity challenges.

    PubMed Central

    Nolen, Lexi Bambas; Braveman, Paula; Dachs, J. Norberto W.; Delgado, Iris; Gakidou, Emmanuela; Moser, Kath; Rolfe, Liz; Vega, Jeanette; Zarowsky, Christina

    2005-01-01

    Special studies and isolated initiatives over the past several decades in low-, middle- and high-income countries have consistently shown inequalities in health among socioeconomic groups and by gender, race or ethnicity, geographical area and other measures associated with social advantage. Significant health inequalities linked to social (dis)advantage rather than to inherent biological differences are generally considered unfair or inequitable. Such health inequities are the main object of health development efforts, including global targets such as the Millennium Development Goals, which require monitoring to evaluate progress. However, most national health information systems (HIS) lack key information needed to assess and address health inequities, namely, reliable, longitudinal and representative data linking measures of health with measures of social status or advantage at the individual or small-area level. Without empirical documentation and monitoring of such inequities, as well as country-level capacity to use this information for effective planning and monitoring of progress in response to interventions, movement towards equity is unlikely to occur. This paper reviews core information requirements and potential databases and proposes short-term and longer term strategies for strengthening the capabilities of HIS for the analysis of health equity and discusses HIS-related entry points for supporting a culture of equity-oriented decision-making and policy development. PMID:16184279

  5. Black-White Health Inequalities in Canada.

    PubMed

    Veenstra, Gerry; Patterson, Andrew C

    2016-02-01

    Little is known about Black-White health inequalities in Canada or the applicability of competing explanations for them. To address this gap, we used nine cycles of the Canadian Community Health Survey to analyze multiple health outcomes in a sample of 3,127 Black women, 309,720 White women, 2,529 Black men and 250,511 White men. Adjusting for age, marital status, urban/rural residence and immigrant status, Black women and men were more likely than their White counterparts to report diabetes and hypertension, Black women were less likely than White women to report cancer and fair/poor mental health and Black men were less likely than White men to report heart disease. These health inequalities persisted after controlling for education, household income, smoking, physical activity and body-mass index. We conclude that high rates of diabetes and hypertension among Black Canadians may stem from experiences of racism in everyday life, low rates of heart disease and cancer among Black Canadians may reflect survival bias and low rates of fair/poor mental health among Black Canadian women represent a mental health paradox similar to the one that exists for African Americans in the United States.

  6. Black-White Health Inequalities in Canada.

    PubMed

    Veenstra, Gerry; Patterson, Andrew C

    2016-02-01

    Little is known about Black-White health inequalities in Canada or the applicability of competing explanations for them. To address this gap, we used nine cycles of the Canadian Community Health Survey to analyze multiple health outcomes in a sample of 3,127 Black women, 309,720 White women, 2,529 Black men and 250,511 White men. Adjusting for age, marital status, urban/rural residence and immigrant status, Black women and men were more likely than their White counterparts to report diabetes and hypertension, Black women were less likely than White women to report cancer and fair/poor mental health and Black men were less likely than White men to report heart disease. These health inequalities persisted after controlling for education, household income, smoking, physical activity and body-mass index. We conclude that high rates of diabetes and hypertension among Black Canadians may stem from experiences of racism in everyday life, low rates of heart disease and cancer among Black Canadians may reflect survival bias and low rates of fair/poor mental health among Black Canadian women represent a mental health paradox similar to the one that exists for African Americans in the United States. PMID:25894533

  7. The Israeli Medical Association's discourse on health inequity.

    PubMed

    Avni, Shlomit; Filc, Dani; Davidovitch, Nadav

    2015-11-01

    The present paper analyses the emergence and characteristics of Israeli Medical Association (IMA) discourse on health inequality in Israel during the years 1977-2010. The IMA addressed the issue of health inequality at a relatively late stage in time (2000), as compared to other OECD countries such as the UK, and did so in a relatively limited way, focusing primarily on professional or economic interests. The dominant discourses on health inequalities within the IMA are biomedical and behavioral, characterized by a focus on medical and/or cultural and behavioral differences, the predominant use of medical terminology, and an individualistic rather than a structural conceptualization of the social characteristics of health differences. Additionally, IMA discourses emphasize certain aspects of health inequality such as the geographical and material inequities, and in doing so overlook the role played by class, nationality and the unequal structure of citizenship. Paradoxically, by disregarding the latter, the IMA's discourse on health inequality has the potential to reinforce the structural causes of these inequities. Our research is based on a textual critical discourse analysis (CDA) of hundreds of documents from the IMA's scientific medical journal, the IMA's members journal and public IMA documents such as press-releases, Knesset protocols, publications, and public surveys. By providing knowledge on the different ways in which the IMA, a key stakeholder in the health field, de-codifies, understands, explains, and attempts to deal with health inequality, the article illuminates possible implications on health policy and seeks to evaluate the direct interventions carried out by the IMA, or by other actors influenced by it, pertaining to health inequality.

  8. Global solidarity, migration and global health inequity.

    PubMed

    Eckenwiler, Lisa; Straehle, Christine; Chung, Ryoa

    2012-09-01

    The grounds for global solidarity have been theorized and conceptualized in recent years, and many have argued that we need a global concept of solidarity. But the question remains: what can motivate efforts of the international community and nation-states? Our focus is the grounding of solidarity with respect to global inequities in health. We explore what considerations could motivate acts of global solidarity in the specific context of health migration, and sketch briefly what form this kind of solidarity could take. First, we argue that the only plausible conceptualization of persons highlights their interdependence. We draw upon a conception of persons as 'ecological subjects' and from there illustrate what such a conception implies with the example of nurses migrating from low and middle-income countries to more affluent ones. Next, we address potential critics who might counter any such understanding of current international politics with a reference to real-politik and the insights of realist international political theory. We argue that national governments--while not always or even often motivated by moral reasons alone--may nevertheless be motivated to acts of global solidarity by prudential arguments. Solidarity then need not be, as many argue, a function of charitable inclination, or emergent from an acknowledgment of injustice suffered, but may in fact serve national and transnational interests. We conclude on a positive note: global solidarity may be conceptualized to helpfully address global health inequity, to the extent that personal and transnational interdependence are enough to motivate national governments into action.

  9. Health inequalities: trends, progress, and policy.

    PubMed

    Bleich, Sara N; Jarlenski, Marian P; Bell, Caryn N; LaVeist, Thomas A

    2012-04-01

    Health inequalities, which have been well documented for decades, have more recently become policy targets in developed countries. This review describes time trends in health inequalities (by sex, race/ethnicity, and socioeconomic status), commitments to reduce health inequalities, and progress made to eliminate health inequalities in the United States, United Kingdom, and other OECD countries. Time-trend data in the United States indicate a narrowing of the gap between the best- and worst-off groups in some health indicators, such as life expectancy, but a widening of the gap in others, such as diabetes prevalence. Similarly, time-trend data in the United Kingdom indicate a narrowing of the gap between the best- and worst-off groups in some indicators, such as hypertension prevalence, whereas the gap between social classes has increased for life expectancy. More research and better methods are needed to measure precisely the relationships between stated policy goals and observed trends in health inequalities. PMID:22224876

  10. Genetics and health inequalities: hypotheses and controversies

    PubMed Central

    Mackenbach, J.

    2005-01-01

    This article reviews the current understanding of the explanation of socioeconomic inequalities in health in industrialised countries and then tries to determine where genetic factors could fit into explanatory schemes. It focuses on the explanation of socioeconomic inequalities in frequency of the main health problems of middle and old age. PMID:15767378

  11. [Equity in health? Health inequalities, ethics, and theories of distributive justice].

    PubMed

    Buyx, A M

    2010-01-01

    It is well-documented that the socio-economic status has an important influence on health. In all developed countries, health is closely correlated with income, education, and type of employment, as well as with several other social determinants. While data on this socio-economic health gradient have been available for decades, the moral questions surrounding social health inequalities have only recently been addressed within the field of public health ethics. The present article offers a brief overview of relevant data on social health inequalities and on some explanatory models from epidemiology, social medicine and related disciplines. The main part explores three influential normative accounts addressing the issue of health inequalities. Finally, an agenda for future work in the field of public health ethics and health inequalities is sketched, with particular attention to the German context.

  12. Symbolic Capital, Consumption, and Health Inequality

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Research on economic inequalities in health has been largely polarized between psychosocial and neomaterial approaches. Examination of symbolic capital—the material display of social status and how it is structurally constrained—is an underutilized way of exploring economic disparities in health and may help to resolve the existing theoretical polarization. In contemporary society, what people do with money and how they consume and display symbols of wealth may be as important as income itself. After tracing the historical rise of consumption in capitalist society and its interrelationship with economic inequality, I discuss evidence for the role of symbolic capital in health inequalities and suggest directions for future research. PMID:21164087

  13. Does inequality in health impede economic growth?

    PubMed

    Grimm, Michael

    2011-01-01

    This paper investigates the effects of inequality in health on economic growth in low and middle income countries. The empirical part of the paper uses an original cross-national panel data set covering 62 low and middle income countries over the period 1985 to 2007. I find a substantial and relatively robust negative effect of health inequality on income levels and income growth controlling for life expectancy, country and time fixed-effects and a large number of other effects that have been shown to matter for growth. The effect also holds if health inequality is instrumented to circumvent a potential problem of reverse causality. Hence, reducing inequality in the access to health care and to health-related information can make a substantial contribution to economic growth.

  14. Impacts of Climate Change on Inequities in Child Health.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Charmian M; Friel, Sharon

    2014-12-03

    This paper addresses an often overlooked aspect of climate change impacts on child health: the amplification of existing child health inequities by climate change. Although the effects of climate change on child health will likely be negative, the distribution of these impacts across populations will be uneven. The burden of climate change-related ill-health will fall heavily on the world's poorest and socially-disadvantaged children, who already have poor survival rates and low life expectancies due to issues including poverty, endemic disease, undernutrition, inadequate living conditions and socio-economic disadvantage. Climate change will exacerbate these existing inequities to disproportionately affect disadvantaged children. We discuss heat stress, extreme weather events, vector-borne diseases and undernutrition as exemplars of the complex interactions between climate change and inequities in child health.

  15. Impacts of Climate Change on Inequities in Child Health

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Charmian M.; Friel, Sharon

    2014-01-01

    This paper addresses an often overlooked aspect of climate change impacts on child health: the amplification of existing child health inequities by climate change. Although the effects of climate change on child health will likely be negative, the distribution of these impacts across populations will be uneven. The burden of climate change-related ill-health will fall heavily on the world’s poorest and socially-disadvantaged children, who already have poor survival rates and low life expectancies due to issues including poverty, endemic disease, undernutrition, inadequate living conditions and socio-economic disadvantage. Climate change will exacerbate these existing inequities to disproportionately affect disadvantaged children. We discuss heat stress, extreme weather events, vector-borne diseases and undernutrition as exemplars of the complex interactions between climate change and inequities in child health. PMID:27417491

  16. Inequalities in health: definitions, concepts, and theories

    PubMed Central

    Arcaya, Mariana C.; Arcaya, Alyssa L.; Subramanian, S. V.

    2015-01-01

    Individuals from different backgrounds, social groups, and countries enjoy different levels of health. This article defines and distinguishes between unavoidable health inequalities and unjust and preventable health inequities. We describe the dimensions along which health inequalities are commonly examined, including across the global population, between countries or states, and within geographies, by socially relevant groupings such as race/ethnicity, gender, education, caste, income, occupation, and more. Different theories attempt to explain group-level differences in health, including psychosocial, material deprivation, health behavior, environmental, and selection explanations. Concepts of relative versus absolute; dose–response versus threshold; composition versus context; place versus space; the life course perspective on health; causal pathways to health; conditional health effects; and group-level versus individual differences are vital in understanding health inequalities. We close by reflecting on what conditions make health inequalities unjust, and to consider the merits of policies that prioritize the elimination of health disparities versus those that focus on raising the overall standard of health in a population. PMID:26112142

  17. Inequalities in health: definitions, concepts, and theories.

    PubMed

    Arcaya, Mariana C; Arcaya, Alyssa L; Subramanian, S V

    2015-01-01

    Individuals from different backgrounds, social groups, and countries enjoy different levels of health. This article defines and distinguishes between unavoidable health inequalities and unjust and preventable health inequities. We describe the dimensions along which health inequalities are commonly examined, including across the global population, between countries or states, and within geographies, by socially relevant groupings such as race/ethnicity, gender, education, caste, income, occupation, and more. Different theories attempt to explain group-level differences in health, including psychosocial, material deprivation, health behavior, environmental, and selection explanations. Concepts of relative versus absolute; dose-response versus threshold; composition versus context; place versus space; the life course perspective on health; causal pathways to health; conditional health effects; and group-level versus individual differences are vital in understanding health inequalities. We close by reflecting on what conditions make health inequalities unjust, and to consider the merits of policies that prioritize the elimination of health disparities versus those that focus on raising the overall standard of health in a population.

  18. Inequalities in health: definitions, concepts, and theories.

    PubMed

    Arcaya, Mariana C; Arcaya, Alyssa L; Subramanian, S V

    2015-01-01

    Individuals from different backgrounds, social groups, and countries enjoy different levels of health. This article defines and distinguishes between unavoidable health inequalities and unjust and preventable health inequities. We describe the dimensions along which health inequalities are commonly examined, including across the global population, between countries or states, and within geographies, by socially relevant groupings such as race/ethnicity, gender, education, caste, income, occupation, and more. Different theories attempt to explain group-level differences in health, including psychosocial, material deprivation, health behavior, environmental, and selection explanations. Concepts of relative versus absolute; dose-response versus threshold; composition versus context; place versus space; the life course perspective on health; causal pathways to health; conditional health effects; and group-level versus individual differences are vital in understanding health inequalities. We close by reflecting on what conditions make health inequalities unjust, and to consider the merits of policies that prioritize the elimination of health disparities versus those that focus on raising the overall standard of health in a population. PMID:26112142

  19. [Inequalities in health: definitions, concepts, and theories].

    PubMed

    Arcaya, Mariana C; Arcaya, Alyssa L; Subramanian, S V

    2015-10-01

    Individuals from different backgrounds, social groups, and countries enjoy different levels of health. This article defines and distinguishes between unavoidable health inequalities and unjust and preventable health inequities. We describe the dimensions along which health inequalities are commonly examined, including across the global population, between countries or states, and within geographies, by socially relevant groupings such as race/ethnicity, gender, education, caste, income, occupation, and more. Different theories attempt to explain group-level differences in health, including psychosocial, material deprivation, health behavior, environmental, and selection explanations. Concepts of relative versus absolute; dose response versus threshold; composition versus context; place versus space; the life course perspective on health; causal pathways to health; conditional health effects; and group-level versus individual differences are vital in understanding health inequalities. We close by reflecting on what conditions make health inequalities unjust, and to consider the merits of policies that prioritize the elimination of health disparities versus those that focus on raising the overall standard of health in a population. PMID:26758216

  20. Income inequality and health in China: A panel data analysis.

    PubMed

    Bakkeli, Nan Zou

    2016-05-01

    During the last decades, the level of income inequality in China has increased dramatically. Despite rapid economic growth and improved living conditions, the health performance in China has dropped compared to the period before the economic reform. The "Wilkinson hypothesis" suggests that increased income inequality in a society is correlated to worse health performance. China is a particular interesting case due to the rapid socioeconomic change in the country. This study uses the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS) to address the question of whether income inequality has an impact on individuals' risks of having health problems in China. Unlike previous studies with health measures such as self-reported health or mortality rate, our study uses physical functions to measure individual health. By analysing panel data using county/city-level dummies and year fixed-effects, we found that income inequality does not have a significant impact on individuals' risks of having health problems. This result is robust when changing between different indicators for income inequality.

  1. Global solidarity, migration and global health inequity.

    PubMed

    Eckenwiler, Lisa; Straehle, Christine; Chung, Ryoa

    2012-09-01

    The grounds for global solidarity have been theorized and conceptualized in recent years, and many have argued that we need a global concept of solidarity. But the question remains: what can motivate efforts of the international community and nation-states? Our focus is the grounding of solidarity with respect to global inequities in health. We explore what considerations could motivate acts of global solidarity in the specific context of health migration, and sketch briefly what form this kind of solidarity could take. First, we argue that the only plausible conceptualization of persons highlights their interdependence. We draw upon a conception of persons as 'ecological subjects' and from there illustrate what such a conception implies with the example of nurses migrating from low and middle-income countries to more affluent ones. Next, we address potential critics who might counter any such understanding of current international politics with a reference to real-politik and the insights of realist international political theory. We argue that national governments--while not always or even often motivated by moral reasons alone--may nevertheless be motivated to acts of global solidarity by prudential arguments. Solidarity then need not be, as many argue, a function of charitable inclination, or emergent from an acknowledgment of injustice suffered, but may in fact serve national and transnational interests. We conclude on a positive note: global solidarity may be conceptualized to helpfully address global health inequity, to the extent that personal and transnational interdependence are enough to motivate national governments into action. PMID:22827320

  2. [Methods for measuring inequalities in health].

    PubMed

    Schneider, Maria Cristina; Castillo-Salgado, Carlos; Bacallao, Jorge; Loyola, Enrique; Mujica, Oscar J; Vidaurre, Manuel; Roca, Anne

    2002-12-01

    Measuring health inequalities is indispensable for progress in improving the health situation in the Region of the Americas, where the analysis of average values is no longer sufficient. Analyzing health inequalities is a fundamental tool for action that seeks greater equity in health. There are various measurement methods, with differing levels of complexity, and choosing one rather than another depends on the objective of the study. The purpose of this article is to familiarize health professionals and decision-making institutions with methodological aspects of the measurement and simple analysis of health inequalities, utilizing basic data that are regularly reported by geopolitical unit. The calculation method and the advantages and disadvantages of the following indicators are presented: the rate ratio and the rate difference, the effect index, the population attributable risk, the index of dissimilarity, the slope index of inequality and the relative index of inequality, the Gini coefficient, and the concentration index. The methods presented are applicable to measuring various types of inequalities and at different levels of analysis. PMID:12690727

  3. CDC Health Disparities and Inequalities Report--U.S. 2013

    MedlinePlus

    ... to Community Health Tribal Support Women's Health CDC Health Disparities & Inequalities Report (CHDIR) Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir ... Sheets 2011 Report More Information CDC Releases Second Health Disparities & Inequalities Report - United States, 2013 CDC and its partners ...

  4. Income inequality and health: a causal review.

    PubMed

    Pickett, Kate E; Wilkinson, Richard G

    2015-03-01

    There is a very large literature examining income inequality in relation to health. Early reviews came to different interpretations of the evidence, though a large majority of studies reported that health tended to be worse in more unequal societies. More recent studies, not included in those reviews, provide substantial new evidence. Our purpose in this paper is to assess whether or not wider income differences play a causal role leading to worse health. We conducted a literature review within an epidemiological causal framework and inferred the likelihood of a causal relationship between income inequality and health (including violence) by considering the evidence as a whole. The body of evidence strongly suggests that income inequality affects population health and wellbeing. The major causal criteria of temporality, biological plausibility, consistency and lack of alternative explanations are well supported. Of the small minority of studies which find no association, most can be explained by income inequality being measured at an inappropriate scale, the inclusion of mediating variables as controls, the use of subjective rather than objective measures of health, or follow up periods which are too short. The evidence that large income differences have damaging health and social consequences is strong and in most countries inequality is increasing. Narrowing the gap will improve the health and wellbeing of populations.

  5. Inequality and inequity in access to health care and treatment for chronic conditions in China: the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study.

    PubMed

    Elwell-Sutton, Timothy M; Jiang, Chao Qiang; Zhang, Wei Sen; Cheng, Kar Keung; Lam, Tai H; Leung, Gabriel M; Schooling, C M

    2013-08-01

    Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are a large and rapidly-growing problem in China and other middle-income countries. Clinical treatment of NCDs is long-term and expensive, so it may present particular problems for equality and horizontal equity (equal treatment for equal need) in access to health care, although little is known about this at present in low- and middle-income countries. To address this gap, and inform policy for a substantial proportion of the global population, we examined inequality and inequity in general health care utilization (doctor consultations and hospital admissions) and in treatment of chronic conditions (hypertension, hyperglycaemia and dyslipidaemia), in 30 499 Chinese adults aged ≥50 years from one of China's richest provinces, using the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study (2003-2008). We used concentration indices to test for inequality and inequity in utilization by household income per head. Inequality was decomposed to show the contributions of income, indicators of 'need for health care' (age, sex, self-rated health, coronary heart disease risk and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and non-need factors (education, occupation, out-of-pocket health care payments and health insurance). We found inequality and inequity in treatment of chronic conditions but not in general health care utilization. Using more objective and specific measures of 'need for health care' increased estimates of inequity for treatment of chronic conditions. Income and non-need factors (especially health insurance, education and occupation) made the largest contributions to inequality. Further work is needed on why access to treatment for chronic conditions in China is restricted for those on low incomes and how these inequities can be mitigated.

  6. The Interplay between socioeconomic inequalities and clinical oral health.

    PubMed

    Steele, J; Shen, J; Tsakos, G; Fuller, E; Morris, S; Watt, R; Guarnizo-Herreño, C; Wildman, J

    2015-01-01

    Oral health inequalities associated with socioeconomic status are widely observed but may depend on the way that both oral health and socioeconomic status are measured. Our aim was to investigate inequalities using diverse indicators of oral health and 4 socioeconomic determinants, in the context of age and cohort. Multiple linear or logistic regressions were estimated for 7 oral health measures representing very different outcomes (2 caries prevalence measures, decayed/missing/filled teeth, 6-mm pockets, number of teeth, anterior spaces, and excellent oral health) against 4 socioeconomic measures (income, education, Index of Multiple Deprivation, and occupational social class) for adults aged ≥21 y in the 2009 UK Adult Dental Health Survey data set. Confounders were adjusted and marginal effects calculated. The results showed highly variable relationships for the different combinations of variables and that age group was critical, with different relationships at different ages. There were significant income inequalities in caries prevalence in the youngest age group, marginal effects of 0.10 to 0.18, representing a 10- to 18-percentage point increase in the probability of caries between the wealthiest and every other quintile, but there was not a clear gradient across the quintiles. With number of teeth as an outcome, there were significant income gradients after adjustment in older groups, up to 4.5 teeth (95% confidence interval, 2.2-6.8) between richest and poorest but none for the younger groups. For periodontal disease, income inequalities were mediated by other socioeconomic variables and smoking, while for anterior spaces, the relationships were age dependent and complex. In conclusion, oral health inequalities manifest in different ways in different age groups, representing age and cohort effects. Income sometimes has an independent relationship, but education and area of residence are also contributory. Appropriate choices of measures in relation to age

  7. The Interplay between socioeconomic inequalities and clinical oral health.

    PubMed

    Steele, J; Shen, J; Tsakos, G; Fuller, E; Morris, S; Watt, R; Guarnizo-Herreño, C; Wildman, J

    2015-01-01

    Oral health inequalities associated with socioeconomic status are widely observed but may depend on the way that both oral health and socioeconomic status are measured. Our aim was to investigate inequalities using diverse indicators of oral health and 4 socioeconomic determinants, in the context of age and cohort. Multiple linear or logistic regressions were estimated for 7 oral health measures representing very different outcomes (2 caries prevalence measures, decayed/missing/filled teeth, 6-mm pockets, number of teeth, anterior spaces, and excellent oral health) against 4 socioeconomic measures (income, education, Index of Multiple Deprivation, and occupational social class) for adults aged ≥21 y in the 2009 UK Adult Dental Health Survey data set. Confounders were adjusted and marginal effects calculated. The results showed highly variable relationships for the different combinations of variables and that age group was critical, with different relationships at different ages. There were significant income inequalities in caries prevalence in the youngest age group, marginal effects of 0.10 to 0.18, representing a 10- to 18-percentage point increase in the probability of caries between the wealthiest and every other quintile, but there was not a clear gradient across the quintiles. With number of teeth as an outcome, there were significant income gradients after adjustment in older groups, up to 4.5 teeth (95% confidence interval, 2.2-6.8) between richest and poorest but none for the younger groups. For periodontal disease, income inequalities were mediated by other socioeconomic variables and smoking, while for anterior spaces, the relationships were age dependent and complex. In conclusion, oral health inequalities manifest in different ways in different age groups, representing age and cohort effects. Income sometimes has an independent relationship, but education and area of residence are also contributory. Appropriate choices of measures in relation to age

  8. Maternal Depression and Childhood Health Inequalities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Turney, Kristin

    2011-01-01

    An increasing body of literature documents considerable inequalities in the health of young children in the United States, though maternal depression is one important, yet often overlooked, determinant of children's health. In this article, the author uses data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (N = 4,048) and finds that maternal…

  9. Does inequality in self-assessed health predict inequality in survival by income? Evidence from Swedish data.

    PubMed

    van Doorslaer, Eddy; Gerdtham, Ulf G

    2003-11-01

    This paper empirically addresses two questions using a large, individual-level Swedish data set which links mortality data to health survey data. The first question is whether there is an effect of an individual's self-assessed health (SAH) on his subsequent survival probability and if this effect differs by socioeconomic factors. Our results indicate that the effect of SAH on mortality risk declines with age-probably because of adjustment towards 'milder' overall health evaluations at higher ages-but does not seem to differ by indicators of socioeconomic status (SES) like income or education. This finding suggests that there is no systematic adjustment of SAH by SES and therefore that any measured income-related inequality in SAH is unlikely to be biased by reporting error. The second question is: how much of the income-related inequality in mortality can be explained by income-related inequality in SAH? Using a decomposition method, we find that inequality in SAH accounts for only about 10% of mortality inequality if interactions are not allowed for, but its contribution is increased to about 28% if account is taken of the reporting tendencies by age. In other words, omitting the interaction between age and SAH leads to a substantial underestimation of the partial contribution of SAH inequality by income. These results suggest that the often observed inequalities in SAH by income do have predictive power for the-less often observed-inequalities in survival by income.

  10. Inequalities, the arts and public health: Towards an international conversation

    PubMed Central

    Parkinson, Clive; White, Mike

    2014-01-01

    This paper considers how participatory arts informed by thinking in public health can play a significant part internationally in addressing inequalities in health. It looks beyond national overviews of arts and health to consider what would make for meaningful international practice, citing recent initiatives of national networks in English-speaking countries and examples of influential developments in South America and the European Union. In the context of public health thinking on inequalities and social justice, the paper posits what would make for good practice and appropriate research that impacts on policy. As the arts and health movement gathers momentum, the paper urges the arts to describe their potency in the policy-making arena in the most compelling ways to articulate their social, economic and cultural values. In the process, it identifies the reflexive consideration of participatory practice – involving people routinely marginalised from decision-making processes – as a possible avenue into this work. PMID:25729409

  11. Ethical Issues in Addressing Inequity in/through ESL Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Ena

    2011-01-01

    This article outlines a researcher's struggles with conducting "ethical" research when her case study reveals racializations faced by a minority teacher in a Canadian ESL program. How might becoming privy to research participants' experiences of inequity in ESL education complicate the notion of research ethics when "doing the right thing" runs…

  12. Income inequality and health: pathways and mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Kawachi, I; Kennedy, B P

    1999-04-01

    The relationship between income and health is well established: the higher an individual's income, the better his or her health. However, recent research suggests that health may also be affected by the distribution of income within society. We outline the potential mechanisms underlying the so-called relative income hypothesis, which predicts that an individual's health status is better in societies with a more equal distribution of incomes. The effects of income inequality on health may be mediated by underinvestment in social goods, such as public education and health care; disruption of social cohesion and the erosion of social capital; and the harmful psychosocial effects of invidious social comparisons.

  13. Principles of Lifeworld Led Public Health Practice in the UK and Sweden: Reducing Health Inequalities

    PubMed Central

    Hemingway, Ann; Norton, Liz; Aarts, Clara

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to consider the role of the lifeworld perspective in reducing inequalities in health and we explain how the public health practitioner can use this perspective to address public health issues with individuals and groups. We offer ideas for public health actions that are based on and deal with the lifeworld context of individual people or families. Each of the dimensions of the lifeworld temporality, spatiality, intersubjectivity, embodiment and mood are outlined and their significance explained in relation to health inequalities. Suggestions for action to reduce health inequalities are made and overall principles of lifeworld led public health practice are proposed by way of conclusion. The principles comprise understanding the community members' lifeworld view, understanding their view of their potential, offering resources and facilitating empowerment, and sharing lifeworld case studies and lobbying to influence local and national policy in relation to both the individual and communities. PMID:25642346

  14. [Inequity in health: its historical development].

    PubMed

    Salaverry García, Oswaldo

    2013-01-01

    Health inequity, main issue of contemporary debates on public health, is based on philosophical and historical concepts that date back to the idea of justice from classic Greece. The Aristotelian approach on distributive justice and its higher form, epiekeia or equity, has been reviewed, as well as how this evolves from the Middle Ages and modernity to the heart of the debate of a variety of thinkers such as liberal Rawls and Nobel laureate Amartya Sen. On this conceptual debate lies the World Health Organization version that links equity to health determinants and intends to make it operational through the equitable provision of health services. PMID:24448954

  15. A Community-Based Participatory Planning Process and Multilevel Intervention Design: Toward Eliminating Cardiovascular Health Inequities

    PubMed Central

    Schulz, Amy J.; Israel, Barbara A.; Coombe, Chris M.; Gaines, Causandra; Reyes, Angela G.; Rowe, Zachary; Sand, Sharon; Strong, Larkin L.; Weir, Sheryl

    2010-01-01

    The elimination of persistent health inequities requires the engagement of multiple perspectives, resources and skills. Community-based participatory research is one approach to developing action strategies that promote health equity by addressing contextual as well as individual level factors, and that can contribute to addressing more fundamental factors linked to health inequity. Yet many questions remain about how to implement participatory processes that engage local insights and expertise, are informed by the existing public health knowledge base, and build support across multiple sectors to implement solutions. We describe a CBPR approach used to conduct a community assessment and action planning process, culminating in development of a multilevel intervention to address inequalities in cardiovascular disease in Detroit, Michigan. We consider implications for future efforts to engage communities in developing strategies toward eliminating health inequities. PMID:21873580

  16. [Income inequality and health: the case of Rio de Janeiro].

    PubMed

    Szwarcwald, C L; Bastos, F I; Esteves, M A; de Andrade, C L; Paez, M S; Medici, E V; Derrico, M

    1999-01-01

    This ecological analysis addresses the association between income inequality and health status in the municipality of Rio de Janeiro. Data were analyzed using geo-processing and multiple regression techniques. The following health indicators were used: infant mortality rate; standardized mortality rate; life expectancy at birth; and homicide rate among 15-29-year-old males. Patterns of income inequality were assessed through income distribution indicators: Gini index, Robin Hood index, and top 10 %/bottom 40% average income ratio. The results indicate significant correlations between income distribution indicators and health indicators, providing additional empirical evidence of the association between health status and income inequality. For the homicide rate, the effect of the indicator "density of slum residents" was also relevant, suggesting that further deterioration in health standards may be due to social disruption of deprived communities and the resultant increase in criminal activity. The geo-epidemiological analysis presented here highlights the association between adverse health outcomes and residential concentration of poverty. Social policies focused on slum residents are needed to reduce the harmful effects of relative deprivation.

  17. Income related inequalities in mental health in Great Britain: analysing the causes of health inequality over time.

    PubMed

    Wildman, John

    2003-03-01

    Using regression techniques this paper estimates the level of income related health inequality in GB in 1992 and 1998. Inequality is decomposed to investigate which socio-demographic factors are important contributors to health differences. The paper includes a range of measured and subjective income variables to control for absolute income. A relative deprivation measure is included to test the impact of income inequality on health inequality. It is found that subjective financial status is a major determinant of ill-health and makes a major contribution to income related inequalities in health. Relative deprivation is an important contributor for women but not for men.

  18. Understanding and Addressing Racial Disparities in Health Care

    PubMed Central

    Williams, David R.; Rucker, Toni D.

    2000-01-01

    Racial disparities in medical care should be understood within the context of racial inequities in societal institutions. Systematic discrimination is not the aberrant behavior of a few but is often supported by institutional policies and unconscious bias based on negative stereotypes. Effectively addressing disparities in the quality of care requires improved data systems, increased regulatory vigilance, and new initiatives to appropriately train medical professionals and recruit more providers from disadvantaged minority backgrounds. Identifying and implementing effective strategies to eliminate racial inequities in health status and medical care should be made a national priority. PMID:11481746

  19. [Importance of genetics for health inequalities].

    PubMed

    Mielck, Andreas; Rogowski, W

    2007-02-01

    In Germany it has rarely been assessed in a systematic way, if and how genetic disposition and genetic testing are linked to health inequality. The paper aims to be a contribution towards closing this gap. In a first step, it is pointed out that the discussion about potential links between genetic causes of social inequalities has concentrated on issues such as body height and intelligence. It is stressed that, of course, social status is mainly determined socially and not genetically. In the second step, medical benefits of genetic testing are discussed. It can be assumed that low status groups are using these tests less often than high status groups, and that they are less capable of interpreting the results. Tests that can have a positive effect on health could thus lead to an increase of health inequalities. However, empirical studies for testing these hypotheses are hardly available. In the third step, the question is raised whether genetic information could lead to social discrimination (e.g. concerning health insurance, life insurance or employer). According to the current empirical literature, to date, this risk is (still) rather small. Thus, it is stressed that more research is needed, and that already today there is some need for intervention (e.g. concerning equal access to genetic testing, better information of low status groups).

  20. Tackling inequalities in health: the Australian experience.

    PubMed

    Whitehead, M; Judge, K; Hunter, D J; Maxwell, R; Scheuer, M A

    1993-03-20

    Federal and state governments in Australia have embarked on a series of national initiatives which show a firm commitment to tackling social inequalities in health. The development of national goals and targets for health, for example, covers social and environmental conditions and sets differential targets for specific social groups with very poor health status. In a complementary initiative, a wide ranging analysis of the health care system--the National Health Strategy--has as one of its main objectives to improve the equitable impact of the health system. Where problems of access to and quality of services have been exposed, policies have been devised to deal with them. The exceptionally poor health of the Aboriginal community has elicited cross party support for action. Resources have been allocated to implement the National Aboriginal Health Strategy: to improve living and working conditions, education, and employment opportunities. Britain can glean much from the Australian experience. PMID:8490345

  1. Overcoming structural inequalities in oral health: the role of dental curricula.

    PubMed

    Foster Page, L A; Chen, V; Gibson, B; McMillan, J

    2016-06-01

    To date the role of health professional schools in addressing oral health inequalities have been minimal, as attempts have focused principally upon systemic reform and broader societal obligations. Professionalism is a broad competency that is taught throughout dental schools and encompasses a range of attributes. Professionalism as a competency draws some debate and appears to be a shifting phenomenon. We may ask if professionalism in the dental curricula may be better addressed by social accountability? Social accountability directs oral health professional curricula (education, research, and service activities) towards addressing the priority health concerns of the community, in our case oral health inequalities. Although working toward dental schools becoming more socially accountable seems like a sensible way to address oral health inequalities, it might have limitations. We will consider some of the challenges in the dental curricula by considering some of the political, structural, social and ethical factors that influence our institutions and our graduates. PMID:27352476

  2. Squeezing blood from a stone: how income inequality affects the health of the American workforce.

    PubMed

    Williams, Jessica Allia R; Rosenstock, Linda

    2015-04-01

    Income inequality is very topical-in both political and economic circles-but although income and socioeconomic status are known determinants of health status, income inequality has garnered scant attention with respect to the health of US workers. By several measures, income inequality in the United States has risen since 1960. In addition to pressures from an increasingly competitive labor market, with cash wages losing out to benefits, workers face pressures from changes in work organization. We explored these factors and the mounting evidence of income inequality as a contributing factor to poorer health for the workforce. Although political differences may divide the policy approaches undertaken, addressing income inequality is likely to improve the overall social and health conditions for those affected.

  3. Health and social inequities in Turkey.

    PubMed

    Dedeoglu, N

    1990-01-01

    Social and economic policies of governments directly influence the health of the people. These policies, in turn, are determined by the national and foreign controllers of power. Economic and social factors in Turkey during the late 1970s led to a new modelling of the economic system, from a Keynesian to a market-oriented and monetarist model. The state mechanism was also altered to form a centralized, authoritarian regime in order to enforce the requirements of the economy. As a result, the middle class diminished in size, inequalities in income distribution increased, unemployment climbed, the purchasing power of wage earners decreased, government spending for education and health was cut and new oppressive laws were enacted. Health services were already urban-biased and hospital-oriented, but new free-market measures were instituted which promoted private health institutions and attempted to transform state-owned and financed hospitals into self-supporting, independent business enterprises. The only school of public health was closed down; preventive medicine expenditures were lowered while hospital rates and drug prices were increased. All these changes affected the health status of the population. Mortality and morbidity inequalities had already existed between the rich and the poor, men and women, urban and rural settlements, educated and illiterate, West and East, always in favour of the former. However, the new policies exacerbated the inequities. Infectious diseases including tuberculosis increased, nutrition worsened, occupational diseases and work accidents rose to be the highest in Europe. The power-holding minority is not interested in the health of populations and is committed to pursue its social and economic policies. Ad hoc research, especially cross-sectional mortality studies repeated at regular intervals can provide data on the most vulnerable groups as no other valid information exists. There is little hope of these data being used for

  4. Health and social inequities in Turkey.

    PubMed

    Dedeoglu, N

    1990-01-01

    Social and economic policies of governments directly influence the health of the people. These policies, in turn, are determined by the national and foreign controllers of power. Economic and social factors in Turkey during the late 1970s led to a new modelling of the economic system, from a Keynesian to a market-oriented and monetarist model. The state mechanism was also altered to form a centralized, authoritarian regime in order to enforce the requirements of the economy. As a result, the middle class diminished in size, inequalities in income distribution increased, unemployment climbed, the purchasing power of wage earners decreased, government spending for education and health was cut and new oppressive laws were enacted. Health services were already urban-biased and hospital-oriented, but new free-market measures were instituted which promoted private health institutions and attempted to transform state-owned and financed hospitals into self-supporting, independent business enterprises. The only school of public health was closed down; preventive medicine expenditures were lowered while hospital rates and drug prices were increased. All these changes affected the health status of the population. Mortality and morbidity inequalities had already existed between the rich and the poor, men and women, urban and rural settlements, educated and illiterate, West and East, always in favour of the former. However, the new policies exacerbated the inequities. Infectious diseases including tuberculosis increased, nutrition worsened, occupational diseases and work accidents rose to be the highest in Europe. The power-holding minority is not interested in the health of populations and is committed to pursue its social and economic policies. Ad hoc research, especially cross-sectional mortality studies repeated at regular intervals can provide data on the most vulnerable groups as no other valid information exists. There is little hope of these data being used for

  5. Beyond inequality: Acknowledging the complexity of social determinants of health.

    PubMed

    Eckersley, Richard

    2015-12-01

    The impact of inequality on health is gaining more attention as public and political concern grows over increasing inequality. The income inequality hypothesis, which holds that inequality is detrimental to overall population health, is especially pertinent. However the emphasis on inequality can be challenged on both empirical and theoretical grounds. Empirically, the evidence is contradictory and contested; theoretically, it is inconsistent with our understanding of human societies as complex systems. Research and discussion, both scientific and political, need to reflect better this complexity, and give greater recognition to other social determinants of health. PMID:26560411

  6. The contribution of occupation to health inequality

    PubMed Central

    Ravesteijn, Bastian; van Kippersluis, Hans; van Doorslaer, Eddy

    2014-01-01

    Health is distributed unequally by occupation. Workers on a lower rung of the occupational ladder report worse health, have a higher probability of disability and die earlier than workers higher up the occupational hierarchy. Using a theoretical framework that unveils some of the potential mechanisms underlying these disparities, three core insights emerge: (i) there is selection into occupation on the basis of initial wealth, education, and health, (ii) there will be behavioural responses to adverse working conditions, which can have compensating or reinforcing effects on health, and (iii) workplace conditions increase health inequalities if workers with initially low socioeconomic status choose harmful occupations and don’t offset detrimental health effects. We provide empirical illustrations of these insights using data for the Netherlands and assess the evidence available in the economics literature. PMID:24899789

  7. [Social inequality and health in Brazil].

    PubMed

    Neri, Marcelo; Soares, Wagner

    2002-01-01

    This paper studies the relationship between social inequality and health in Brazil. The strategy adopted by the authors was to analyze needs and uses of medical care as well as access to health insurance plans according to income distribution. Determinants of health care consumption were also studied by means of logistic regression. The main source of data was the 1998 National Sample Household Survey of the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (PNAD-IBGE). In general, individuals in the lowest income distribution deciles had less access to health insurance, greater need for medical care, and lower consumption of such services. Other determinants of health care consumption were heavily associated with the most privileged social strata (greater access to schooling, water supply, sewerage, electricity, garbage collection, and health insurance) and with factors pointing to the capacity to supply these services in country.

  8. Racial ideology and explanations for health inequalities among middle-class whites.

    PubMed

    Muntaner, C; Nagoshi, C; Diala, C

    2001-01-01

    Middle-class whites' explanations for racial inequalities in health can have a profound impact on the type of questions addressed in epidemiology and public health research. These explanations also constitute a subset of white racial ideology (i.e., racism) that in itself powerfully affects the health of non-whites. This study begins to examine the nature of attributions for racial inequalities in health among university students who by definition are likely to be involved in the research, policy, and service professions (the upper middle class). Investigation of the degree to which middle-class whites attribute racial inequalities in cardiovascular health (between themselves and African Americans, American Indians, or Asian Americans) to biological, social, or lifestyle factors reveals that whites tend to attribute their own health to lifestyle choice and to biology rather than to social factors. These results suggest that contemporary middle-class whites' "self-serving" explanations for racial inequalities in health are comprised of two beliefs: implicit biologism (race is an attribute of organisms rather than a social relation) and liberal belief in self-determination, choice, and individual responsibility--some of the core lay beliefs of the worldview that sustains neoliberal capitalism. Contemporary white middle-class explanations for racial inequalities in health appear to include assumptions that justify class inequality. Liberal approaches to racism in public health are bound to miss a key component of racial ideology that is currently used to justify racial and class inequalities. PMID:11562012

  9. Racial ideology and explanations for health inequalities among middle-class whites.

    PubMed

    Muntaner, C; Nagoshi, C; Diala, C

    2001-01-01

    Middle-class whites' explanations for racial inequalities in health can have a profound impact on the type of questions addressed in epidemiology and public health research. These explanations also constitute a subset of white racial ideology (i.e., racism) that in itself powerfully affects the health of non-whites. This study begins to examine the nature of attributions for racial inequalities in health among university students who by definition are likely to be involved in the research, policy, and service professions (the upper middle class). Investigation of the degree to which middle-class whites attribute racial inequalities in cardiovascular health (between themselves and African Americans, American Indians, or Asian Americans) to biological, social, or lifestyle factors reveals that whites tend to attribute their own health to lifestyle choice and to biology rather than to social factors. These results suggest that contemporary middle-class whites' "self-serving" explanations for racial inequalities in health are comprised of two beliefs: implicit biologism (race is an attribute of organisms rather than a social relation) and liberal belief in self-determination, choice, and individual responsibility--some of the core lay beliefs of the worldview that sustains neoliberal capitalism. Contemporary white middle-class explanations for racial inequalities in health appear to include assumptions that justify class inequality. Liberal approaches to racism in public health are bound to miss a key component of racial ideology that is currently used to justify racial and class inequalities.

  10. Explaining the role of the social determinants of health on health inequality in South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Ataguba, John Ele-Ojo; Day, Candy; McIntyre, Di

    2015-01-01

    Background Action on the social determinants of health (SDH) is relevant for reducing health inequalities. This is particularly the case for South Africa (SA) with its very high level of income inequality and inequalities in health and health outcomes. This paper provides evidence on the key SDH for reducing health inequalities in the country using a framework initially developed by the World Health Organization. Objective This paper assesses health inequalities in SA and explains the factors (i.e. SDH and other individual level factors) that account for large disparities in health. The relative contribution of different SDH to health inequality is also assessed. Design A cross-sectional design is used. Data come from the third wave of the nationally representative National Income Dynamics Study. A subsample of adults (18 years and older) is used. The main variable of interest is dichotomised good versus bad self-assessed health (SAH). Income-related health inequality is assessed using the standard concentration index (CI). A positive CI means that the rich report better health than the poor. A negative value signifies the opposite. The paper also decomposes the CI to assess its contributing factors. Results Good SAH is significantly concentrated among the rich rather than the poor (CI=0.008; p<0.01). Decomposition of this result shows that social protection and employment (contribution=0.012; p<0.01), knowledge and education (0.005; p<0.01), and housing and infrastructure (−0.003; p<0.01) contribute significantly to the disparities in good SAH in SA. After accounting for these other variables, the contribution of income and poverty is negligible. Conclusions Addressing health inequalities inter alia requires an increased government commitment in terms of budgetary allocations to key sectors (i.e. employment, social protection, education, housing, and other appropriate infrastructure). Attention should also be paid to equity in benefits from government

  11. Beyond the income inequality hypothesis: class, neo-liberalism, and health inequalities.

    PubMed

    Coburn, David

    2004-01-01

    This paper describes and critiques the income inequality approach to health inequalities. It then presents an alternative class-based model through a focus on the causes and not only the consequences of income inequalities. In this model, the relationship between income inequality and health appears as a special case within a broader causal chain. It is argued that global and national socio-political-economic trends have increased the power of business classes and lowered that of working classes. The neo-liberal policies accompanying these trends led to increased income inequality but also poverty and unequal access to many other health-relevant resources. But international pressures towards neo-liberal doctrines and policies are differentially resisted by various nations because of historically embedded variation in class and institutional structures. Data presented indicates that neo-liberalism is associated with greater poverty and income inequalities, and greater health inequalities within nations. Furthermore, countries with Social Democratic forms of welfare regimes (i.e., those that are less neo-liberal) have better health than do those that are more neo-liberal. The paper concludes with discussion of what further steps are needed to "go beyond" the income inequality hypothesis towards consideration of a broader set of the social determinants of health. PMID:14572920

  12. Beyond the income inequality hypothesis: class, neo-liberalism, and health inequalities.

    PubMed

    Coburn, David

    2004-01-01

    This paper describes and critiques the income inequality approach to health inequalities. It then presents an alternative class-based model through a focus on the causes and not only the consequences of income inequalities. In this model, the relationship between income inequality and health appears as a special case within a broader causal chain. It is argued that global and national socio-political-economic trends have increased the power of business classes and lowered that of working classes. The neo-liberal policies accompanying these trends led to increased income inequality but also poverty and unequal access to many other health-relevant resources. But international pressures towards neo-liberal doctrines and policies are differentially resisted by various nations because of historically embedded variation in class and institutional structures. Data presented indicates that neo-liberalism is associated with greater poverty and income inequalities, and greater health inequalities within nations. Furthermore, countries with Social Democratic forms of welfare regimes (i.e., those that are less neo-liberal) have better health than do those that are more neo-liberal. The paper concludes with discussion of what further steps are needed to "go beyond" the income inequality hypothesis towards consideration of a broader set of the social determinants of health.

  13. Inequalities in oral health: the role of sociology.

    PubMed

    Gibson, L B; Blake, M; Baker, S

    2016-06-01

    This paper seeks to identify an important point of contact between the literature on inequalities in oral health and the sociology of power. The paper begins by exploring the problem of social inequalities in oral health from the point of view of human freedom. It then goes on to briefly consider why inequalities in oral health matter before providing a brief overview of current approaches to reducing inequalities in oral health. After this the paper briefly introduces the problem of power in sociology before going on to outline why the problem of power matters in the problem of inequalities in oral health. Here the paper discusses how two key principles associated with the social bond have become central to how we think about health related inequalities. These principles are the principle of treating everyone the same (the principle of autonomy) and the related principle of allowing everyone to pursue their own goals (the principle of intimacy). These principles are outlined and subsequently discussed in detail with application to debates about interventions to reduce oral health related inequalities including that of water fluoridation. The paper highlights how the 'Childsmile' programme in Scotland appears to successfully negotiate the tensions inherent in attempting to do something about inequalities in oral health. It then concludes by highlighting some of the tensions that remain in attempting to alleviate oral health related inequalities.

  14. Inequalities in oral health: the role of sociology.

    PubMed

    Gibson, L B; Blake, M; Baker, S

    2016-06-01

    This paper seeks to identify an important point of contact between the literature on inequalities in oral health and the sociology of power. The paper begins by exploring the problem of social inequalities in oral health from the point of view of human freedom. It then goes on to briefly consider why inequalities in oral health matter before providing a brief overview of current approaches to reducing inequalities in oral health. After this the paper briefly introduces the problem of power in sociology before going on to outline why the problem of power matters in the problem of inequalities in oral health. Here the paper discusses how two key principles associated with the social bond have become central to how we think about health related inequalities. These principles are the principle of treating everyone the same (the principle of autonomy) and the related principle of allowing everyone to pursue their own goals (the principle of intimacy). These principles are outlined and subsequently discussed in detail with application to debates about interventions to reduce oral health related inequalities including that of water fluoridation. The paper highlights how the 'Childsmile' programme in Scotland appears to successfully negotiate the tensions inherent in attempting to do something about inequalities in oral health. It then concludes by highlighting some of the tensions that remain in attempting to alleviate oral health related inequalities. PMID:27352473

  15. Income inequality and health: a critical review of the literature.

    PubMed

    Macinko, James A; Shi, Leiyu; Starfield, Barbara; Wulu, John T

    2003-12-01

    This article critically reviews published literature on the relationship between income inequality and health outcomes. Studies are systematically assessed in terms of design, data quality, measures, health outcomes, and covariates analyzed. At least 33 studies indicate a significant association between income inequality and health outcomes, while at least 12 studies do not find such an association. Inconsistencies include the following: (1) the model of health determinants is different in nearly every study, (2) income inequality measures and data are inconsistent, (3) studies are performed on different combinations of countries and/or states, (4) the time period in which studies are conducted is not consistent, and (5) health outcome measures differ. The relationship between income inequality and health is unclear. Future studies will require a more comprehensive model of health production that includes health system covariates, sufficient sample size, and adjustment for inconsistencies in income inequality data.

  16. Inequality in Human Resources for Health: Measurement Issues.

    PubMed

    Speybroeck, Niko; Paraje, Guillermo; Prasad, Amit; Goovaerts, Pierre; Ebener, Steeve; Evans, David B

    2012-04-01

    This article discusses options to allow comparative analysis of inequalities in the distribution of health workers (HWs) across and within countries using a single summary measure of the distribution. Income inequality generally is measured across individuals, but inequalities in the dispersion of HWs must use geographical areas or population groupings as units of analysis. The article first shows how this change of observational unit creates a resolution problem for various inequality indices and then tests how sensitive a simple ratio measure of the distribution of HWs is to changes in resolution. This ratio of inequality is illustrated first with the global distribution of HWs and then with its distributions within Indonesia. The resolution problem is not solved through this new approach, and indicators of inequalities of access to HWs or health services more generally appear not to be comparable across countries. Investigating geographical inequalities over time in one setting is possible but only if the units of analysis remain the same over time.

  17. What kinds of policies to reduce health inequalities in the UK do researchers support?

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Katherine E.; Kandlik Eltanani, Mor

    2015-01-01

    Background Despite a wealth of research and policy initiatives, progress in tackling the UK's health inequalities has been limited. This article explores whether there appears to be consensus among researchers about the kinds of policies likely to reduce health inequalities. Methods Ninety-nine proposals for addressing health inequalities were identified from multiple sources. Forty-one researchers participated in a survey assessing the extent to which they believed each proposal would reduce health inequalities, based on three criteria. The 20 proposals generating most support were employed in a second stage, in which 92 researchers indicated which proposals they felt would have the greatest impact on reducing health inequalities. Results Some consensus exists among researchers about the policy approaches likely to reduce UK health inequalities: a more progressive distribution of income/wealth, greater investment in services for deprived communities, plus regulatory policies to limit the impact of lifestyle-behavioural risks. However, researchers' support for proposals varies depending whether they are asked to express their expert opinion or to comment on the strength of the available evidence. Conclusions When consulting researchers about health inequalities, policymakers need to consider whether they are seeking research-informed expertise or assessments of the available evidence; these questions are likely to yield different responses. PMID:25174045

  18. Reducing asthma disparities by addressing environmental inequities: a case study of regional asthma management and prevention's advocacy efforts.

    PubMed

    Lamb, Anne Kelsey; Ervice, Joel; Lorenzen, Kathryn; Prentice, Bob; White, Shannon

    2011-01-01

    Regional Asthma Management and Prevention describes its collaborative approach to address a social determinant of health--air quality--and the associated inequities that have led to asthma disparities impacting African American and Latino communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. The strategies, aimed at decreasing diesel pollution in disproportionately impacted communities, span the levels of the socioecological model, with an emphasis on policy outcomes. Regional Asthma Management and Prevention describes how this work fits within a larger comprehensive approach to address asthma disparities encompassing several components, ranging from clinical management to environmental protection. PMID:21160331

  19. The effects of income inequality on health.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, C

    1999-01-01

    Much of the discussion about individual and group differences in illness and life expectancy has focused on the effects of individual characteristics, both status and behavioural. This is also characteristic of much of the literature, which attempts to explain why men have higher rates of disease and lower life expectancy than women. After a period in which 'social policy was no longer such an important part of preventive health policy', there is now renewed interest in the influence of the socioeconomic environment on health. Indeed, recently compiled evidence indicates that increasing income inequality is likely to have adverse effects on the community's health. These findings highlight the potential dangers of policy changes which accelerate social and economic divisions.

  20. Introduction: CDC Health Disparities and Inequalities Report - United States, 2013.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Pamela A; Yoon, Paula W; Kaufmann, Rachel B

    2013-11-22

    This supplement is the second CDC Health Disparities and Inequalities Report (CHDIR). The 2011 CHDIR was the first CDC report to assess disparities across a wide range of diseases, behavioral risk factors, environmental exposures, social determinants, and health-care access (CDC. CDC Health Disparities and Inequalities Report-United States, 2011. MMWR 2011;60[Suppl; January 14, 2011]). The 2013 CHDIR provides new data for 19 of the topics published in 2011 and 10 new topics. When data were available and suitable analyses were possible for the topic area, disparities were examined for population characteristics that included race and ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, socioeconomic status, and geographic location. The purpose of this supplement is to raise awareness of differences among groups regarding selected health outcomes and health determinants and to prompt actions to reduce disparities. The findings in this supplement can be used by practitioners in public health, academia and clinical medicine; the media; the general public; policymakers; program managers; and researchers to address disparities and help all persons in the United States live longer, healthier, and more productive lives.

  1. A health inequalities perspective on violence against women.

    PubMed

    Humphreys, Cathy

    2007-03-01

    The present paper argues that the physical and mental health consequences of gender-based violence constitute a major public health problem in the UK and a source of significant health inequality. The concept of violence against women is explored alongside brief examples of the mental and physical health impact of this violence. While the impact on women's health is relatively uncontested, the extent to which social divisions such as poverty, class and minority ethnic status create specific vulnerabilities to violence are more controversial. A widely held view within the movement to support survivors within the UK has been that violence against women cuts across class and ethnicity, and is found in all communities and classes. A more nuanced discussion of the way in which poverty and ethnic background may create particular vulnerabilities is explored. Disentangling cause and consequence, and also the barriers to help-seeking for minority ethnic women are discussed. The role of social workers in addressing the way in which violence against women is both ubiquitous but marginal in their caseloads is discussed, and appropriate interventions to respond to health inequality issues are proposed.

  2. How do young children expect others to address resource inequalities between groups?

    PubMed

    Elenbaas, Laura; Killen, Melanie

    2016-10-01

    Age-related changes in young children's expectations for others' resource allocation decisions were investigated. Children ages 3 to 6years (N=80) were introduced to an inequality of resources between two groups. Participants gave their expectations for (a) how a member of the group with more resources (advantaged group) and a member of the group with fewer resources (disadvantaged group) would evaluate the inequality (okay or not okay), (b) which group each of the two individuals would prefer (ingroup or outgroup), and (c) how each of the two individuals would allocate subsequent resources between the groups. Findings revealed children's differing expectations for how others would address resource inequalities based on group status. Children expected that if the disadvantaged group member evaluated the inequality negatively then he or she would reduce the disparity. But children expected that if the advantaged group member evaluated the inequality positively then he or she would increase the disparity. Furthermore, 5- and 6-year-olds, but not 3- and 4-year-olds, expected individuals to seek more for their ingroup if they preferred their ingroup over the outgroup. Different from previous research on children's own resource allocation decisions, these findings reveal the circumstances under which children expect others to perpetuate or attenuate resource inequalities between groups.

  3. Mental disorders, health inequalities and ethics: A global perspective.

    PubMed

    Ngui, Emmanuel M; Khasakhala, Lincoln; Ndetei, David; Roberts, Laura Weiss

    2010-01-01

    The global burden of neuropsychiatry diseases and related mental health conditions is enormous, underappreciated and under resourced, particularly in the developing nations. The absence of adequate and quality mental health infrastructure and workforce is increasingly recognized. The ethical implications of inequalities in mental health for people and nations are profound and must be addressed in efforts to fulfil key bioethics principles of medicine and public health: respect for individuals, justice, beneficence, and non-malfeasance. Stigma and discrimination against people living with mental disorders affects their education, employment, access to care and hampers their capacity to contribute to society. Mental health well-being is closely associated to several Millennium Development Goals and economic development sectors including education, labour force participation, and productivity. Limited access to mental health care increases patient and family suffering. Unmet mental health needs have a negative effect on poverty reduction initiatives and economic development. Untreated mental conditions contribute to economic loss because they increase school and work absenteeism and dropout rates, healthcare expenditure, and unemployment. Addressing unmet mental health needs will require development of better mental health infrastructure and workforce and overall integration of mental and physical health services with primary care, especially in the developing nations. PMID:20528652

  4. Income-related health inequalities across regions in Korea

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Introduction In addition to economic inequalities, there has been growing concern over socioeconomic inequalities in health across income levels and/or regions. This study measures income-related health inequalities within and between regions and assesses the possibility of convergence of socioeconomic inequalities in health as regional incomes converge. Methods We considered a total of 45,233 subjects (≥ 19 years) drawn from the four waves of the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES). We considered true health as a latent variable following a lognormal distribution. We obtained ill-health scores by matching self-rated health (SRH) to its distribution and used the Gini Coefficient (GC) and an income-related ill-health Concentration Index (CI) to examine inequalities in income and health, respectively. Results The GC estimates were 0.3763 and 0.0657 for overall and spatial inequalities, respectively. The overall CI was -0.1309, and the spatial CI was -0.0473. The spatial GC and CI estimates were smaller than their counterparts, indicating substantial inequalities in income (from 0.3199 in Daejeon to 0.4233 Chungnam) and income-related health inequalities (from -0.1596 in Jeju and -0.0844 in Ulsan) within regions. The results indicate a positive relationship between the GC and the average ill-health and a negative relationship between the CI and the average ill-health. Those regions with a low level of health tended to show an unequal distribution of income and health. In addition, there was a negative relationship between the GC and the CI, that is, the larger the income inequalities, the larger the health inequalities were. The GC was negatively related to the average regional income, indicating that an increase in a region's average income reduced income inequalities in the region. On the other hand, the CI showed a positive relationship, indicating that an increase in a region's average income reduced health inequalities in the

  5. Health inequalities in England: advocacy, articulation and action.

    PubMed

    Adshead, Fiona; Thorpe, Allison

    2009-01-01

    There is a long history of people expressing concern about the health, lifestyle and well-being of our population--and of proposals for action to address the inequitable experiences between groups within this population. Over time, our understanding of both the problem and its causal connections has changed considerably. This is reflected within an increasingly explicit articulation of the issues and a progressively more sophisticated and determined cross-sectoral approach to tackling health inequalities. This paper reflects on the progress we have made in England in addressing this challenge, suggesting that we need to engage more proactively with our population and with our international partners, taking a systematic partnership approach to inform policy, practice and delivery on the ground.

  6. Traffic, air pollution, minority and socio-economic status: addressing inequities in exposure and risk.

    PubMed

    Pratt, Gregory C; Vadali, Monika L; Kvale, Dorian L; Ellickson, Kristie M

    2015-05-19

    Higher levels of nearby traffic increase exposure to air pollution and adversely affect health outcomes. Populations with lower socio-economic status (SES) are particularly vulnerable to stressors like air pollution. We investigated cumulative exposures and risks from traffic and from MNRiskS-modeled air pollution in multiple source categories across demographic groups. Exposures and risks, especially from on-road sources, were higher than the mean for minorities and low SES populations and lower than the mean for white and high SES populations. Owning multiple vehicles and driving alone were linked to lower household exposures and risks. Those not owning a vehicle and walking or using transit had higher household exposures and risks. These results confirm for our study location that populations on the lower end of the socio-economic spectrum and minorities are disproportionately exposed to traffic and air pollution and at higher risk for adverse health outcomes. A major source of disparities appears to be the transportation infrastructure. Those outside the urban core had lower risks but drove more, while those living nearer the urban core tended to drive less but had higher exposures and risks from on-road sources. We suggest policy considerations for addressing these inequities.

  7. Traffic, Air Pollution, Minority and Socio-Economic Status: Addressing Inequities in Exposure and Risk

    PubMed Central

    Pratt, Gregory C.; Vadali, Monika L.; Kvale, Dorian L.; Ellickson, Kristie M.

    2015-01-01

    Higher levels of nearby traffic increase exposure to air pollution and adversely affect health outcomes. Populations with lower socio-economic status (SES) are particularly vulnerable to stressors like air pollution. We investigated cumulative exposures and risks from traffic and from MNRiskS-modeled air pollution in multiple source categories across demographic groups. Exposures and risks, especially from on-road sources, were higher than the mean for minorities and low SES populations and lower than the mean for white and high SES populations. Owning multiple vehicles and driving alone were linked to lower household exposures and risks. Those not owning a vehicle and walking or using transit had higher household exposures and risks. These results confirm for our study location that populations on the lower end of the socio-economic spectrum and minorities are disproportionately exposed to traffic and air pollution and at higher risk for adverse health outcomes. A major source of disparities appears to be the transportation infrastructure. Those outside the urban core had lower risks but drove more, while those living nearer the urban core tended to drive less but had higher exposures and risks from on-road sources. We suggest policy considerations for addressing these inequities. PMID:25996888

  8. Women's Health: Racial and Ethnic Health Inequities.

    PubMed

    Sarto, Gloria E; Brasileiro, Julia; Franklin, Doris J

    2013-09-01

    Starting in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s, reports appeared in the literature describing the poor health status and poor health outcomes experienced by minority populations, especially blacks, in the United States. Additionally, attention was brought to the limited access to health services for minority populations. These reports prompted Congress to request the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to conduct a study to assess differences in the kinds and quality of healthcare received by US racial and ethnic minorities and nonminorities. The study culminated in the report Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care.(1) Among the recommendations included in the report published in 2003 is a need for (1) change in legal, regulatory, and policy interventions and (2) health systems interventions. The committee extended the recommendations to include (3) implementation of programs to enhance individual education and empowerment, (4) a need for research into identifying racial and ethnic disparities and the development of and assessment of intervention strategies, and (5) a need to integrate cross-cultural education into the training of all health professionals.(1) Subsequent to this report, there has been an increase in efforts to increase diversity among healthcare providers and research investigators.(2) The American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) continues to encourage recruitment of minorities to careers in medicine, to stress the importance of a diverse medical school faculty and administration, and to graduate culturally competent healthcare providers who will decrease health disparities and improve health equity. Additionally, as noted by Ginther et al in 2011, there continues to be a need to increase diversity at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) not only among the workforce but also among the recipients of awards.(3) To this end, the NIH has established the Working Group on Diversity in the Biomedical Research

  9. Income inequality, area-level poverty, perceived aversion to inequality, and self-rated health in Japan.

    PubMed

    Oshio, Takashi; Kobayashi, Miki

    2009-08-01

    In this study we conduct a multilevel analysis to investigate the association between regional income inequality and self-rated health in Japan, based on two nationwide surveys. We confirm that there is a significant association between area-level income inequality and individual-level health assessment. We also find that health assessment tends to be more sensitive to income inequality among lower income individuals, and to degree of area-level poverty, than income inequality for the society as a whole. In addition, we examine how individuals are averse to inequality, based on the observed association between inequality and self-rated health.

  10. Does Income Inequality Harm Health? New Cross-National Evidence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beckfield, Jason

    2004-01-01

    The provocative hypothesis that income inequality harms population health has sparked a large body of research, some of which has reported strong associations between income inequality and population health. Cross-national evidence is frequently cited in support of this important hypothesis, but the hypothesis remains controversial, and the…

  11. Poverty, inequality and a political economy of mental health.

    PubMed

    Burns, J K

    2015-04-01

    The relationship between poverty and mental health is indisputable. However, to have an influence on the next set of sustainable global development goals, we need to understand the causal relationships between social determinants such as poverty, inequality, lack of education and unemployment; thereby clarifying which aspects of poverty are the key drivers of mental illness. Some of the major challenges identified by Lund (2014) in understanding the poverty-mental health relationship are discussed including: the need for appropriate poverty indicators; extending this research agenda to a broader range of mental health outcomes; the need to engage with theoretical concepts such as Amartya Sen's capability framework; and the need to integrate the concept of income/economic inequality into studies of poverty and mental health. Although income inequality is a powerful driver of poor physical and mental health outcomes, it features rarely in research and discourse on social determinants of mental health. This paper interrogates in detail the relationships between poverty, income inequality and mental health, specifically: the role of income inequality as a mediator of the poverty-mental health relationship; the relative utility of commonly used income inequality metrics; and the likely mechanisms underlying the impact of inequality on mental health, including direct stress due to the setting up of social comparisons as well as the erosion of social capital leading to social fragmentation. Finally, we need to interrogate the upstream political, social and economic causes of inequality itself, since these should also become potential targets in efforts to promote sustainable development goals and improve population (mental) health. In particular, neoliberal (market-oriented) political doctrines lead to both increased income inequality and reduced social cohesion. In conclusion, understanding the relationships between politics, poverty, inequality and mental health

  12. Rethinking the health selection explanation for health inequalities.

    PubMed

    West, P

    1991-01-01

    As one of several explanations for class differentials in health, health selection has received remarkably little systematic attention in the inequalities debate. It is widely regarded as having (at best) a very minor role in the production of inequalities, and a theoretical debt to social Darwinism. This paper examines the validity of those assumptions in terms of the evidence which has emerged since the publication of the 'Black Report'. It is suggested that it is too easy to write off health selection as of little or no significance, and that reconceptualising the issue within a specifically sociological perspective owing much to labelling theory offers much greater potential for understanding the processes involved. From this perspective, health selection has many of the features of discrimination of the sort that characterises race and sex. PMID:2024152

  13. Urban air pollution and health inequities: a workshop report.

    PubMed Central

    2001-01-01

    Over the past three decades, an array of legislation with attendant regulations has been implemented to enhance the quality of the environment and thereby improve the public's health. Despite the many beneficial changes that have followed, there remains a disproportionately higher prevalence of harmful environmental exposures, particularly air pollution, for certain populations. These populations most often reside in urban settings, have low socioeconomic status, and include a large proportion of ethnic minorities. The disparities between racial/ethnic minority and/or low-income populations in cities and the general population in terms of environmental exposures and related health risks have prompted the "environmental justice" or "environmental equity" movement, which strives to create cleaner environments for the most polluted communities. Achieving cleaner environments will require interventions based on scientific data specific to the populations at risk; however, research in this area has been relatively limited. To assess the current scientific information on urban air pollution and its health impacts and to help set the agenda for immediate intervention and future research, the American Lung Association organized an invited workshop on Urban Air Pollution and Health Inequities held 22-24 October 1999 in Washington, DC. This report builds on literature reviews and summarizes the discussions of working groups charged with addressing key areas relevant to air pollution and health effects in urban environments. An overview was provided of the state of the science for health impacts of air pollution and technologies available for air quality monitoring and exposure assessment. The working groups then prioritized research needs to address the knowledge gaps and developed recommendations for community interventions and public policy to begin to remedy the exposure and health inequities. PMID:11427385

  14. Social inequalities in health: a proper concern of epidemiology.

    PubMed

    Marmot, Michael; Bell, Ruth

    2016-04-01

    Social inequalities are a proper concern of epidemiology. Epidemiological thinking and modes of analysis are central, but epidemiological research is one among many areas of study that provide the evidence for understanding the causes of social inequalities in health and what can be done to reduce them. Understanding the causes of health inequalities requires insights from social, behavioral and biological sciences, and a chain of reasoning that examines how the accumulation of positive and negative influences over the life course leads to health inequalities in adult life. Evidence that the social gradient in health can be reduced should make us optimistic that reducing health inequalities is a realistic goal for all societies. PMID:27084546

  15. The economic analysis of inequalities in health.

    PubMed

    Muurinen, J M; Le Grand, J

    1985-01-01

    The paper explains the economist's concept of human capital, and uses it to analyse some of the problems raised in the Black Report on inequalities in health. Individuals are assumed to have an optimal 'stock' of health, defined as the level of stock for which the marginal benefits of further investment in the stock falls below its marginal cost. Differences in marginal benefits and costs between individuals will thus lead to differences in their health stocks. Use of this simple model and its associated concepts can be used to help explain, for instance, why social class differences in mortality are steepest in early adulthood and shallowest in the decade before retirement or why manual workers who 'need' more health than non-manual workers are nonetheless in general less healthy. The model can also contribute to the discussion of normative issues, for instance, to refine the concept of equality of access. However, while it has great potential in organising and analysing hypotheses concerning health behaviour, the model is in no way a substitute for other approaches; indeed it only becomes meaningful when interpreted in sociological, epidemiological and medical terms.

  16. Income Inequality, Trust, and Population Health in 33 Countries

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Objectives. I examined the association between income inequality and population health and tested whether this association was mediated by interpersonal trust or public expenditures on health. Methods. Individual data on trust were collected from 48 641 adults in 33 countries. These data were linked to country data on income inequality, public health expenditures, healthy life expectancy, and adult mortality. Regression analyses tested for statistical mediation of the association between income inequality and population health outcomes by country differences in trust and health expenditures. Results. Income inequality correlated with country differences in trust (r = −0.51), health expenditures (r = −0.45), life expectancy (r = −0.74), and mortality (r = 0.55). Trust correlated with life expectancy (r = 0.48) and mortality (r = −0.47) and partly mediated their relations to income inequality. Health expenditures did not correlate with life expectancy and mortality, and health expenditures did not mediate links between inequality and health. Conclusions. Income inequality might contribute to short life expectancy and adult mortality in part because of societal differences in trust. Societies with low levels of trust may lack the capacity to create the kind of social supports and connections that promote health and successful aging. PMID:20864707

  17. Changing health inequalities in the Nordic countries?

    PubMed

    Lahelma, E; Lundberg, O; Manderbacka, K; Roos, E

    2001-01-01

    The Nordic countries, referring here to Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, have often been viewed as a group of countries with many features in common, such as geographical location, history, culture, religion, language, and economic and political structures. It has also been habitual to refer to a "Nordic model" of welfare states comprising a large public sector, active labour market policies, high costs for social welfare as well as high taxes, and a general commitment to social equality. Recent research suggests that much of this "Nordicness" appears to remain despite the fact that the Nordic countries have experienced quite different changes during the 1980s and 1990s. How this relates to changes in health inequalities is in the focus of this supplement. PMID:11482792

  18. The structuring of ethnic inequalities in health: economic position, racial discrimination, and racism.

    PubMed

    Nazroo, James Y

    2003-02-01

    Differences in health across ethnic groups have been documented in the United States and the United Kingdom. The extent to which socioeconomic inequalities underlie such differences remains contested, with many instead focusing on cultural or genetic explanations. In both the United States and the United Kingdom, data limitations have greatly hampered investigations of ethnic inequalities in health. Perhaps foremost of these is the inadequate measurement of ethnicity, but also important is the lack of good data on socioeconomic position, particularly data that address life-course issues. Other elements of social disadvantage, particularly experiences of racism, are also neglected. The author reviews existing evidence and presents new evidence to suggest that social and economic inequalities, underpinned by racism, are fundamental causes of ethnic inequalities in health.

  19. Income inequality and mental health--empirical evidence from Australia.

    PubMed

    Bechtel, Lucy; Lordan, Grace; Rao, D S Prasada

    2012-06-01

    The causal association between absolute income and health is well-established; however, the relationship between income inequality and health is not. The conclusions from the received studies vary across the region or country studied and/or the methodology employed. Using the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia panel survey, this paper investigates the relationship between mental health and inequality in Australia. A variety of income inequality indices are calculated to test both the income inequality and relative deprivation hypotheses. We find that mental health is only adversely affected by the presence of relative deprivation to a very small degree. In addition, we do not find support for the income inequality hypothesis. Importantly, our results are robust to a number of sensitivity analyses.

  20. Health Inequalities Among Sexual Minority Adults

    PubMed Central

    Blosnich, John R.; Farmer, Grant W.; Lee, Joseph G. L.; Silenzio, Vincent M. B.; Bowen, Deborah J.

    2014-01-01

    Background Improving the health of lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) individuals is a Healthy People 2020 goal; however, the IOM highlighted the paucity of information currently available about LGB populations. Purpose To compare health indicators by gender and sexual orientation statuses. Methods Data are from Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System surveys conducted January–December of 2010 with population-based samples of non-institutionalized U.S. adults aged over 18 years (N=93,414) in ten states that asked about respondents’ sexual orientation (response rates=41.1%–65.6%). Analyses were stratified by gender and sexual orientation to compare indicators of mental health, physical health, risk behaviors, preventive health behaviors, screening tests, health care utilization, and medical diagnoses. Analyses were conducted in March 2013. Results Overall, 2.4% (95% CI=2.2, 2.7) of the sample identified as LGB. All sexual minority groups were more likely to be current smokers than their heterosexual peers. Compared with heterosexual women, lesbian women had over 30% decreased odds of having an annual routine physical exam, and bisexual women had over 2.5 times the odds of not seeking medical care owing to cost. Compared with heterosexual men, gay men were less likely to be overweight or obese, and bisexual men were twice as likely to report a lifetime asthma diagnosis. Conclusions This study represents one of the largest samples of LGB adults and finds important health inequalities, including that bisexual women bear particularly high burdens of health disparities. Further work is needed to identify causes of and intervention for these disparities. PMID:24650836

  1. Practitioner perspectives on tackling health inequalities: findings from an evaluation of healthy living centres in Scotland.

    PubMed

    Rankin, David; Backett-Milburn, Kathryn; Platt, Stephen

    2009-03-01

    Little is known about how health practitioners tasked with tackling health inequalities account for their own programmes and actions. This paper attempts to address this gap by drawing on data collected in the course of an evaluation of the Healthy Living Centre (HLC) programme, which was designed to address the wider determinants of health, in particular social exclusion and socioeconomic disadvantage, through targeting services at the most deprived local communities. Six Scottish HLC case studies explored in depth how HLC practitioners conceptualised 'health inequalities' and applied the construct to legitimate their public health and health improvement work. Practitioners drew on multiple explanations of health inequalities, sought to apply holistic approaches to service provision, and developed activities that took account of classed practices intended to overcome class-related disempowerment and stigma. They discussed the challenges of positioning services to appeal to and reach target groups and the difficulties in assessing the impact of their work on reducing health inequalities. Responses to tackling inequalities were variable across time and between HLCs, resulting from uneven learning about target groups and their changing needs, an evolving policy agenda and consideration given to the longer-term sustainability of HLC sites. Although practitioners' work to address health inequalities was limited by the programme's focus on working with disadvantaged groups, findings illustrate how classed practices are linked to the challenges of attracting and successfully engaging with such groups. Practitioner accounts highlighted the importance of gaining acceptance to overcome barriers to engagement with disadvantaged communities, the time required to achieve a satisfactory level of engagement, the proximity of service providers to clients and the adaptability of services necessary to address evolving needs.

  2. Socioeconomic inequality in voting participation and self-rated health.

    PubMed Central

    Blakely, T A; Kennedy, B P; Kawachi, I

    2001-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: This study tested the hypothesis that disparities in political participation across socioeconomic status affect health. Specifically, the association of voting inequality at the state level with individual self-rated health was examined. METHODS: A multilevel study of 279,066 respondents to the Current Population Survey (CPS) was conducted. State-level inequality in voting turnout by socioeconomic status (family income and educational attainment) was derived from November CPS data for 1990, 1992, 1994, and 1996. RESULTS: Individuals living in the states with the highest voting inequality had an odds ratio of fair/poor self-rated health of 1.43 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.22, 1.68) compared with individuals living in the states with the lowest voting inequality. This odds ratio decreased to 1.34 (95% CI = 1.14, 1.56) when state income inequality was added and to 1.27 (95% CI = 1.10, 1.45) when state median income was included. The deleterious effect of low individual household income on self-rated health was most pronounced among states with the greatest voting and income inequality. CONCLUSIONS: Socioeconomic inequality in political participation (as measured by voter turnout) is associated with poor self-rated health, independently of both income inequality and state median household income. PMID:11189832

  3. Noise nuisance and health inequalities in Belgium: a population study

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Context Lower socioeconomic groups are more likely to live in contaminated environments. This may partly explain socioeconomic health inequalities. Aims Does noise nuisance contribute to socio-economic inequalities in subjective health? Method This research is based on the last Belgian census data carried out in 2001. We work on a 10% sample of the Belgian population. The data are processed through bivariate and multivariate analyses. We model poor subjective health in relation to exposure to noise nuisance and several socio-economic variables. Results The risk of poor subjective health increases with noise nuisance and is higher in lower socio-economic groups. Noise nuisance does contribute to health inequalities, particularly regarding type of housing and activity. These relations are stronger in urban areas. Conclusions Noise nuisance affects the subjective health status and contributes to health inequalities, particularly in urban areas. This suggests that public policies, particularly those related to environmental planning, should be driven also by environmental equity considerations.

  4. Rural Health Inequities and the Role of Cooperative Extension

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andress, Lauri; Fitch, Cindy

    2016-01-01

    Health inequities affect communities through adverse health outcomes, lost productivity, and increased health care costs. They arise from unequal distribution of social determinants of health--the conditions in which people are born and live. Health outcomes, tied to behaviors and health care, also are rooted in location and social status.…

  5. ON THE CHOICE OF HEALTH INEQUALITY MEASURE FOR THE LONGITUDINAL ANALYSIS OF INCOME-RELATED HEALTH INEQUALITIES

    PubMed Central

    Allanson, Paul; Petrie, Dennis

    2013-01-01

    Changes in rank-dependent income-related health inequality measures over time may usefully be decomposed into contributions due to changes in health outcomes and changes in individuals' positions in the income distribution. This paper establishes the normative implications of this type of decomposition by embedding it within a broader analysis of changes in the ‘health achievement’ index. We further show that the choice of health inequality measure implies a particular vertical equity judgement, which may be expressed on a common scale in terms of the concentration index of health changes that would be inequality preserving. We illustrate the empirical implications of this choice by reporting results from a longitudinal analysis of changes in income-related health inequality in Great Britain using the concentration, the Erreygers and Wagstaff indices of health attainments and the concentration index of health shortfalls. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:22368075

  6. On the choice of health inequality measure for the longitudinal analysis of income-related health inequalities.

    PubMed

    Allanson, Paul; Petrie, Dennis

    2013-03-01

    Changes in rank-dependent income-related health inequality measures over time may usefully be decomposed into contributions due to changes in health outcomes and changes in individuals' positions in the income distribution. This paper establishes the normative implications of this type of decomposition by embedding it within a broader analysis of changes in the 'health achievement' index. We further show that the choice of health inequality measure implies a particular vertical equity judgement, which may be expressed on a common scale in terms of the concentration index of health changes that would be inequality preserving. We illustrate the empirical implications of this choice by reporting results from a longitudinal analysis of changes in income-related health inequality in Great Britain using the concentration, the Erreygers and Wagstaff indices of health attainments and the concentration index of health shortfalls. .

  7. Changes in social inequalities in health in the Basque Country

    PubMed Central

    Anitua, C.; Esnaola, S.

    2000-01-01

    STUDY OBJECTIVE—To determine the extent of the inequalities in self reported health between socioeconomic groups and its changes over time in the Basque Country (Spain).
DESIGN—Cross sectional data on the association between occupation, education and income and three health indicators was obtained from the Basque Health Surveys of 1986 and 1992. Representative population samples were analysed. In 1986 the number of respondents was 24 657 and in 1992, 13 277.
SETTING—Basque Country, Spain. 
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES—The effect of socioeconomic position on health and the magnitude of social inequalities in health were quantified using the odds ratios based on logistic regression analysis, and the Relative Index of Inequality.
RESULTS—As was expected, social inequalities in self reported health existed in both surveys, but the social gradient was greater in 1992. Social differences varied according to gender and health indicator. According to education an increase in social inequalities was observed consistently in all the health indicators except long term conditions in women. A consistent increase in inequalities in limiting longstanding illness was also observed according to all socioeconomic indicators.
CONCLUSIONS—These results agree to a large extent with those of previous studies in other countries. In this context the unequal distribution of material circumstances and working conditions between socioeconomic groups seem to play a major part in health inequalities. The worsening of the labour market during this period and the onset of a new economic recession may explain the increase in social inequalities over time.


Keywords: health inequalities; trends; social class; Spain PMID:10818119

  8. Does income inequality have lasting effects on health and trust?

    PubMed

    Rözer, Jesper Jelle; Volker, Beate

    2016-01-01

    According to the income inequality hypothesis, income inequality is associated with poorer health. One important proposed mechanism for this effect is reduced trust. In this study, we argue that income inequality during a person's formative years (i.e., around age 16) may have lasting consequences for trust and health. Multilevel analyses of data from the combined World Values Survey and European Values Study that were collected between 1981 and 2014 support our prediction and show that income inequality is associated with ill health in young adults, in part because it reduces their social trust. The negative consequences of income inequality remain stable for a substantial period of life but eventually fade away and have no effect after age 36.

  9. Measuring and decomposing oral health inequalities in an UK population

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Jing; Wildman, John; Steele, Jimmy

    2013-01-01

    Objectives With health inequalities high on the policy agenda, this study measures oral health inequalities in the UK. Methods We compare an objective clinical measure of oral health (number of natural teeth) with a self-reported measure of the impact of oral health (the Oral Health Impact Profile, OHIP) to establish whether the type of measure affects the scale of inequality measured. Gini coefficients and Concentration Indices (CIs) are calculated with subsequent decompositions using data from the 1998 UK Adult Dental Health Survey. Because the information on OHIP is only available on dentate individuals, analyses on the number of natural teeth are conducted for two samples – the entire sample and the sample with dentate individuals only, the latter to allow direct comparison with OHIP. Results We find considerable overall pure oral health inequalities (number of teeth: Gini = 0.68 (including edentate), Gini = 0.40 (excluding edentate); OHIP: Gini = 0.33) and income-related inequalities for both measures (number of teeth: CI = 0.35 (including edentate), CI = 0.15 (excluding edentate); OHIP: CI = 0.03), and the CI is generally higher for the number of teeth than for OHIP. There are differences across age groups, with CI increasing with age for the number of teeth (excluding edentate: 16–30 years: CI = 0.01, 65 + years: CI = 0.11; including edentate: 16–30 years: CI = 0.01, 65 + years: CI = 0.19). However, inequalities for OHIP were highest in the youngest age group (CI = 0.05). Number of teeth reflects the accumulation of damage over a lifetime, while OHIP records more immediate concerns. Conclusions There are considerable pure oral health inequalities and income-related oral health inequalities in the UK. Using sophisticated methods to measure oral health inequality, we have been able to compare inequality in oral health with inequality in general health. The results provide a benchmark for future comparisons but also indicate that the type of health

  10. New report highlights epidemic of tobacco and global health inequalities

    Cancer.gov

    A new set of 11 global health studies calls attention to the burden of tobacco-related inequalities in low- and middle-income countries and finds that socioeconomic inequalities are associated with increased tobacco use, second-hand smoke exposure and tob

  11. Science for Reducing Health Inequalities Emerges From Social Justice Movements.

    PubMed

    Wing, Steve

    2016-05-01

    Although the health sciences have investigated economic and social inequalities in morbidity and mortality for hundreds of years, health inequalities persist and are, by some measures, increasing. This is not simply a situation in which the knowledge exists but is not implemented. Rather, science in general and epidemiology in particular have focused on quantifying the effects of specific agents considered in isolation. This approach is powerful, but, in the absence of ecological concepts that connect parts and wholes, contributes to maintaining health inequalities. By joining movements for human rights and social justice, health scientists can identify research questions that are relevant to public health, develop methods that are appropriate to answering those questions, and contribute to efforts to reduce health inequalities.

  12. Desperately seeking reductions in health inequalities: perspectives of UK researchers on past, present and future directions in health inequalities research.

    PubMed

    Garthwaite, Kayleigh; Smith, Katherine E; Bambra, Clare; Pearce, Jamie

    2016-03-01

    Following government commitments to reducing health inequalities from 1997 onwards, the UK has been recognised as a global leader in health inequalities research and policy. Yet health inequalities have continued to widen by most measures, prompting calls for new research agendas and advocacy to facilitate greater public support for the upstream policies that evidence suggests are required. However, there is currently no agreement as to what new research might involve or precisely what public health egalitarians ought to be advocating. This article presents an analysis of discussions among 52 researchers to consider the feasibility that research-informed advocacy around particular solutions to health inequalities may emerge in the UK. The data indicate there is a consensus that more should be been done to learn from post-1997 efforts to reduce health inequalities, and an obvious desire to provide clearer policy guidance in future.However, discussions as to where researchers should now focus their efforts and with whom researchers ought to be engaging reveal three distinct ways of approaching health inequalities, each of which has its own epistemological foundations. Such differences imply that a consensus on reducing health inequalities is unlikely to materialise. Instead, progress seems most likely if all three approaches are simultaneously enabled. PMID:27358991

  13. Social determinants of health and health inequities in Nakuru (Kenya)

    PubMed Central

    Muchukuri, Esther; Grenier, Francis R

    2009-01-01

    Background Dramatic inequalities dominate global health today. The rapid urban growth sustained by Kenya in the last decades has created many difficulties that also led to worsening inequalities in health care. The continuous decline in its Human Development Index since the 1990s highlights the hardship that continues to worsen in the country, against the general trend of Sub-Saharan Africa. This paper examines the health status of residents in a major urban centre in Kenya and reviews the effects of selected social determinants on local health. Methods Through field surveys, focus group discussions and a literature review, this study canvasses past and current initiatives and recommends priority actions. Results Areas identified which unevenly affect the health of the most vulnerable segments of the population were: water supply, sanitation, solid waste management, food environments, housing, the organization of health care services and transportation. Conclusion The use of a participatory method proved to be a useful approach that could benefit other urban centres in their analysis of social determinants of health. PMID:19439105

  14. Using local authority data for action on health inequalities: the Caerphilly Health and Social Needs Study.

    PubMed Central

    Fone, David; Jones, Andrew; Watkins, John; Lester, Nathan; Cole, Jane; Thomas, Gary; Webber, Margaret; Coyle, Edward

    2002-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Primary care organisations in the United Kingdom have been given new and challenging population health responsibilities to improve health and address health inequality in local communities through partnership working with local authorities. This requires robust health and social needs assessment data for effective local planning. AIM: To assess the use and value of local authority data shared through partnership working between Caerphilly Local Health Group and Caerphilly County Borough Council. DESIGN OF STUDY: Cross-sectional analysis of aggregate electoral division data. SETTING: Caephilly County Borough, south-east Wales. METHOD: Local authority datasets identified were categorised into one of six domains: income, unemployment, housing, health, education, and social services. Data were presented at electoral division level as rates in thematic maps and correlations between the variables within and between each domain were explored using Spearman's rank correlation coefficient, with particular focus on children in families. Local planning documents were scrutinised to ascertain the use and value of the data. RESULTS: A broad range of data described a comprehensive picture of health and social inequalities within the borough. Multiple deprivation tended to cluster in electoral divisions, particularly for data relating to children, painting an overwhelming picture of inequality in life chances. The data were used in a wide range of local partnership planning initiatives, including the Health Improvement Programme, Children's Services Plan, and a successful Healthy Living Centre bid. CONCLUSION: Local authority data can help primary care organisations in a population approach to needs assessment for use in local partnership planning targeted at reducing health inequalities. PMID:12392118

  15. Income inequality and health: what does the literature tell us?

    PubMed

    Wagstaff, A; van Doorslaer, E

    2000-01-01

    This paper reviews the large and growing body of literature on the apparently negative effects of income inequality on population health. Various hypotheses are identified and described that explain the empirically observed association between measures of income inequality and population health. We have concluded that data from aggregate-level studies of the effect of income inequality on health, i.e. studies at the population and community (e.g. state) levels, are largely insufficient to discriminate between competing hypotheses. Only individual-level studies have the potential to discriminate between most of the advanced hypotheses. The relevant individual-level studies to date, all on U.S. population data, provide strong support for the "absolute-income hypothesis," no support for the "relative-income hypothesis," and little or no support for the "income-inequality hypothesis." Results that provide some support for the income-inequality hypothesis suggest that income inequality at the state level affects mainly the health of the poor. There is only indirect evidence for the "deprivation hypothesis," and no evidence supports the "relative-position hypothesis." Overall, the absolute-income hypothesis, although > 20 years old, is still the most likely to explain the frequently observed strong association between population health and income inequality levels.

  16. Income inequality and population health: correlation and causality.

    PubMed

    Babones, Salvatore J

    2008-04-01

    A large literature now exists on the cross-national correlation between income inequality and population health, but existing studies suffer from sparse data, poor operationalization of income inequality, and the use of low-power statistical models. This paper sets out to estimate the ecological correlation between income inequality and indicators of population health in a very broad panel of countries, to demonstrate that this relationship is largely non-artifactual, and to test whether this relationship might be causal. Gini coefficients of national income inequality in 1970 and 1995 are correlated with life expectancy, infant mortality rates, and murder rates, controlling for national income per capita. In cross-sectional analyses, inequality is significantly correlated with life expectancy, infant mortality, and (inconsistently) the murder rate. The health correlations are shown to be not primarily due to the "convexity effect" of the non-linear relationship between individual income and individual health, which seems to account for no more than one-third of the relationship between inequality and health, and likely much less. Change in inequality 1970-1995 is significantly related to change in life expectancy and infant mortality, suggesting a causal relationship, but these correlations are not robust with respect to sample or controls. It can be concluded that there is a strong, consistent, statistically significant, non-artifactual correlation between national income inequality and population health, but though there is some evidence that this relationship is causal, the relative stability of income inequality over time in most countries makes causality difficult to test.

  17. Gender inequalities of health in the Third World.

    PubMed

    Okojie, C E

    1994-11-01

    This paper examines gender inequalities of health in Third World Countries. Health hazards are present at every stage of a woman's life cycle. Health problems which pose the greatest hardship to women in these countries include: reproductive health problems, excess female mortality in childhood, violence against girls and women, occupational and environmental hazards, and cervical and breast cancer. Many of these lead to maternal mortality which was the most focussed upon indicator of women's health in the literature. Gender inequalities of health originate in the traditional society where definitions of health status and traditional medical practices all reflect the subordinate social status of women. Gender inequalities in health are manifested in traditional medical practices which attribute women's illnesses to behavioral lapses by women; differential access to and utilization of modern healthcare services by women and girls, including maternal care, general healthcare, family planning and safe abortion services. Reasons for gender inequalities in health include--emphasis on women's childbearing roles resulting in early and excessive childbearing; sex preference manifested in discrimination against female children in health and general care; women's workloads which not only expose them to health hazards but also make it difficult for them to take time off for healthcare; lack of autonomy by women leading to lack of decision-making power and access to independent income; early marriage which exposes women to the complications of early and excessive childbearing. Gender inequality in health is one of the social dimensions in which gender inequality is manifested in Third World societies. Strategies to eradicate gender inequalities in health must therefore involve efforts to improve the status of women.

  18. Changes in income inequality and the health of immigrants.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Tod G; Kawachi, Ichiro

    2013-03-01

    Research suggests that income inequality is inversely associated with health. This association has been documented in studies that utilize variation in income inequality across countries or across time from a single country. The primary criticism of these approaches is their inability to account for potential confounders that are associated with income inequality. This paper uses variation in individual experiences of income inequality among immigrants within the United States (U.S.) to evaluate whether individuals who moved from countries with greater income inequality than the U.S. have better health than those who migrated from countries with less income in equality than the U.S. Utilizing individual-level (March Current Population Survey) and country-level data (the United Nations Human Development Reports), we show that among immigrants who have resided in the U.S. between 6 and 20 years, self-reported health is more favorable for the immigrants in the former category (i.e., greater income inequality) than those in the latter (i.e., lower income inequality). Results also show that self-reported health is better among immigrants from more developed countries and those who have more years of education, are male, and are married.

  19. Changes in income inequality and the health of immigrants

    PubMed Central

    Hamilton, Tod G.; Kawachi, Ichiro

    2016-01-01

    Research suggests that income inequality is inversely associated with health. This association has been documented in studies that utilize variation in income inequality across countries or across time from a single country. The primary criticism of these approaches is their inability to account for potential confounders that are associated with income inequality. This paper uses variation in individual experiences of income inequality among immigrants within the United States (U.S.) to evaluate whether individuals who moved from countries with greater income inequality than the U.S. have better health than those who migrated from countries with less income in equality than the U.S. Utilizing individual-level (March Current Population Survey) and country-level data (the United Nations Human Development Reports), we show that among immigrants who have resided in the U.S. between 6 and 20 years, self-reported health is more favorable for the immigrants in the former category (i.e., greater income inequality) than those in the latter (i.e., lower income inequality). Results also show that self-reported health is better among immigrants from more developed countries and those who have more years of education, are male, and are married. PMID:23352417

  20. Wealth inequality and health: a political economy perspective.

    PubMed

    Nowatzki, Nadine R

    2012-01-01

    Despite a plethora of studies on income inequality and health, researchers have been unable to make any firm conclusions as a result of methodological and theoretical limitations. Within this body of research, there has been a call for studies of wealth inequality and health. Wealth is far more unequally distributed than income and is conceptually unique from income. This paper discusses the results of bivariate cross-sectional analyses of the relationship between wealth inequality (Gini coefficient) and population health (life expectancy and infant mortality) in 14 wealthy countries. The results confirm that wealth inequality is associated with poor population health. Both unweighted and weighted correlations between wealth inequality and health are strong and significant, even after controlling for a variety of potential aggregate-level confounders, including gross domestic product per capita, and after excluding the United States, the most unequal country. The results are strongest for female life expectancy and infant mortality. The author outlines potential pathways through which wealth inequality might affect health, using specific countries to illustrate. The article concludes with policy recommendations that could contribute to a more equitable distribution of wealth and, ultimately, decreased health disparities.

  1. Family policy and inequalities in health in different welfare states.

    PubMed

    Fosse, Elisabeth; Bull, Torill; Burström, Bo; Fritzell, Sara

    2014-01-01

    This article focuses on differences in health and welfare outcomes for families with children in three European countries, discussed in relation to national policies for child and family welfare. Data consist of policy documents and cross-national surveys. The document analysis was based on policy documents that described government policies. The statistical analyses utilize data from the European Social Survey. For the analyses in this article, a sub-sample of child families was selected from the countries Slovenia, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Data showed that England's policy has mainly addressed socially disadvantaged groups and areas. Sweden and Slovenia are mainly developing universal policies. The United Kingdom has high scores for subjective general health, but a steep income gradient in the population. Parents in England experience the highest level of at-risk-of-poverty. Sweden generally scores well on health outcomes and on level of at-risk-of-poverty, and the gradient in self-rated general health is the mildest. Slovenia has the weakest economy, but low levels of inequality and low child at-risk-for-poverty scores. The Slovenian example suggests that not only the level of economic wealth, but also its distribution in the population, has bearings on health and life satisfaction, not least on the health of children.

  2. Inequalities in health: evaluation and effectiveness in practice.

    PubMed

    Lazenbatt, A; Orr, J; O'Neill, E

    2001-12-01

    This paper details the findings from a project that assessed the contribution made by nurses, midwives and health visitors to targeting health and social need. This is an important theme within the Northern Ireland Regional Strategy entitled 'Health and well-being into the next millennium: a regional strategy for health and social well-being 1997-2002', which is concerned with addressing inequalities in health status and social well-being. In response to this initial survey, the paper also highlights the second phase of the project that was the development of an evaluation manual specifically designed to assist health-care practitioners in establishing evaluation frameworks and in applying evaluation techniques and methods. The paper describes four research case studies that are intended to illustrate the kinds of evaluation methods necessary to cover the stages of evaluation, needs assessment, structure, process and outcome, and to reflect the experience of applied evaluation as it occurs in practice as opposed to how it appears in textbooks.

  3. Reviving the 'double jeopardy' hypothesis: physical health inequalities, ethnicity and severe mental illness.

    PubMed

    Das-Munshi, Jayati; Stewart, Robert; Morgan, Craig; Nazroo, James; Thornicroft, Graham; Prince, Martin

    2016-09-01

    People with severe mental illness (SMI) experience a reduction in life expectancy of 15-20 years. Physical health and mortality experience may be even worse for ethnic minority groups with SMI, but evidence is limited. We suggest clinical, policy and research recommendations to address this inequality. PMID:27587757

  4. The case for the World Health Organization's Commission on Social Determinants of Health to address gender identity.

    PubMed

    Pega, Frank; Veale, Jaimie F

    2015-03-01

    We analyzed the case of the World Health Organization's Commission on Social Determinants of Health, which did not address gender identity in their final report. We argue that gender identity is increasingly being recognized as an important social determinant of health (SDH) that results in health inequities. We identify right to health mechanisms, such as established human rights instruments, as suitable policy tools for addressing gender identity as an SDH to improve health equity. We urge the World Health Organization to add gender identity as an SDH in its conceptual framework for action on the SDHs and to develop and implement specific recommendations for addressing gender identity as an SDH. PMID:25602894

  5. The case for the World Health Organization's Commission on Social Determinants of Health to address gender identity.

    PubMed

    Pega, Frank; Veale, Jaimie F

    2015-03-01

    We analyzed the case of the World Health Organization's Commission on Social Determinants of Health, which did not address gender identity in their final report. We argue that gender identity is increasingly being recognized as an important social determinant of health (SDH) that results in health inequities. We identify right to health mechanisms, such as established human rights instruments, as suitable policy tools for addressing gender identity as an SDH to improve health equity. We urge the World Health Organization to add gender identity as an SDH in its conceptual framework for action on the SDHs and to develop and implement specific recommendations for addressing gender identity as an SDH.

  6. Response to health inequity: the role of social protection in reducing poverty and achieving equity.

    PubMed

    Scheil-Adlung, Xenia

    2014-06-01

    Health inequities are determined by multiple factors within the health sector and beyond. While gaps in social health protection coverage and effective access to health care are among the most prominent causes of health inequities, social and economic inequalities existing beyond the health sector contribute greatly to barriers to access affordable and acceptable health care. PMID:25217357

  7. Who cares about health inequalities? Cross-country evidence from the World Health Survey.

    PubMed

    King, Nicholas B; Harper, Sam; Young, Meredith E

    2013-08-01

    Reduction of health inequalities within and between countries is a global health priority, but little is known about the determinants of popular support for this goal. We used data from the World Health Survey to assess individual preferences for prioritizing reductions in health and health care inequalities. We used descriptive tables and regression analysis to study the determinants of preferences for reducing health inequalities as the primary health system goal. Determinants included individual socio-demographic characteristics (age, sex, urban residence, education, marital status, household income, self-rated health, health care use, satisfaction with health care system) and country-level characteristics [gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, disability-free life expectancy, equality in child mortality, income inequality, health and public health expenditures]. We used logistic regression to assess the likelihood that individuals ranked minimizing inequalities first, and rank-ordered logistic regression to compare the ranking of other priorities against minimizing health inequalities. Individuals tended to prioritize health system goals related to overall improvement (improving population health and health care responsiveness) over those related to equality and fairness (minimizing inequalities in health and responsiveness, and promoting fairness of financial contribution). Individuals in countries with higher GDP per capita, life expectancy, and equality in child mortality were more likely to prioritize minimizing health inequalities.

  8. Inequality in Human Resources for Health: Measurement Issues

    PubMed Central

    Speybroeck, Niko; Paraje, Guillermo; Prasad, Amit; Goovaerts, Pierre; Ebener, Steeve; Evans, David B.

    2012-01-01

    This article discusses options to allow comparative analysis of inequalities in the distribution of health workers (HWs) across and within countries using a single summary measure of the distribution. Income inequality generally is measured across individuals, but inequalities in the dispersion of HWs must use geographical areas or population groupings as units of analysis. The article first shows how this change of observational unit creates a resolution problem for various inequality indices and then tests how sensitive a simple ratio measure of the distribution of HWs is to changes in resolution. This ratio of inequality is illustrated first with the global distribution of HWs and then with its distributions within Indonesia. The resolution problem is not solved through this new approach, and indicators of inequalities of access to HWs or health services more generally appear not to be comparable across countries. Investigating geographical inequalities over time in one setting is possible but only if the units of analysis remain the same over time. PMID:22736806

  9. Racism and health inequity among Americans.

    PubMed Central

    Shavers, Vickie L.; Shavers, Brenda S.

    2006-01-01

    Research reports often cite socioeconomic status as an underlying factor in the pervasive disparities in health observed for racial/ethnic minority populations. However, often little information or consideration is given to the social history and prevailing social climate that is responsible for racial/ethnic socioeconomic disparities, namely, the role of racism/racial discrimination. Much of the epidemiologic research on health disparities has focused on the relationship between demographic/clinical characteristics and health outcomes in main-effects multivariate models. This approach, however, does not examine the relationship between covariate levels and the processes that create them. It is important to understand the synergistic nature of these relationships to fully understand the impact they have on health status. PURPOSE: A review of the literature was conducted on the role that discrimination in education, housing, employment, the judicial system and the healthcare system plays in the origination, maintenance and perpetuation of racial/ethnic health disparities to serve as background information for funding Program Announcement, PA-05-006, The Effect of Racial/ Ethnic Discrimination/Bias on Healthcare Delivery (http:// grants.nih.gov/grants/ guide/pa-files/PA-05-006.html). The effect of targeted marketing of harmful products and environmental justice are also discussed as they relate to racial/ethnic disparities in health. CONCLUSION: Racial/ethnic disparities in health are the result of a combination of social factors that influence exposure to risk factors, health behavior and access to and receipt of appropriate care. Addressing these disparities will require a system that promotes equity and mandates accountability both in the social environment and within health delivery systems. PMID:16573303

  10. Income-related health inequality in Belgium: a longitudinal perspective.

    PubMed

    Lecluyse, Ann

    2007-09-01

    This paper provides new evidence on the degree of income-related inequality in self-assessed health in Belgium. First of all, we combine the time dimension, which has been shown to be very important in the analysis of inequality, and the use of the recently developed interval regression approach to transform a categorical health variable in a continuous one. Second, we measure how the long-run inequality differs from the short-run inequality. Finally, we decompose this health-related income mobility index as well as the long-run concentration index (CI) itself into its contributors. Using data from the panel survey of Belgian households (1994-2002), we find that health is pro-rich distributed and that its inequality is underestimated by 9.45% when neglecting the dynamics of individuals over time. Income, education, job status and age are the most important contributors in the CI and the difference between the short-run and long-run inequality.

  11. Eliminating inequities in health care: understanding perceptions and participation in an antiracism initiative.

    PubMed

    Havens, Betsy E; Yonas, Michael A; Mason, Mondi A; Eng, Eugenia; Farrar, Vanessa D

    2011-11-01

    Antiracism training for staff of health care institutions is a promising intervention strategy to address racial and ethnic disparities in health care. In 2001, Southern County Public Health Department (SCPHD) staff completed a mandatory Dismantling Racism (DR) training, and some continued with an optional DR process to challenge institutional racism within their agency. To explore factors influencing participation in optional DR activities (i.e., caucuses and Change Team), a process evaluation was conducted involving in-depth interviews with 28 SCPHD administrators and staff members, whose participation in the DR process varied. Findings demonstrate that familiarity with and receptiveness to the relationship between racism and health care inequities influenced participation in DR activities. Perceived relevance and impact of the DR process on the organization and staff were also major factors affecting participation. Improvements for implementing such efforts including the consideration of institutional power and other implications for addressing racial health care inequities through antiracism initiatives are discussed.

  12. Health and social cohesion: why care about income inequality?

    PubMed Central

    Kawachi, I.; Kennedy, B. P.

    1997-01-01

    Throughout the world, wealth and income are becoming more concentrated. Growing evidence suggests that the distribution of income-in addition to the absolute standard of living enjoyed by the poor-is a key determinant of population health. A large gap between rich people and poor people leads to higher mortality through the breakdown of social cohesion. The recent surge in income inequality in many countries has been accompanied by a marked increase in the residential concentration of poverty and affluence. Residential segregation diminishes the opportunities for social cohesion. Income inequality has spillover effects on society at large, including increased rates of crime and violence, impeded productivity and economic growth, and the impaired functioning of representative democracy. The extent of inequality in society is often a consequence of explicit policies and public choice. Reducing income inequality offers the prospect of greater social cohesiveness and better population health. PMID:9112854

  13. Health and social cohesion: why care about income inequality?

    PubMed

    Kawachi, I; Kennedy, B P

    1997-04-01

    Throughout the world, wealth and income are becoming more concentrated. Growing evidence suggests that the distribution of income-in addition to the absolute standard of living enjoyed by the poor-is a key determinant of population health. A large gap between rich people and poor people leads to higher mortality through the breakdown of social cohesion. The recent surge in income inequality in many countries has been accompanied by a marked increase in the residential concentration of poverty and affluence. Residential segregation diminishes the opportunities for social cohesion. Income inequality has spillover effects on society at large, including increased rates of crime and violence, impeded productivity and economic growth, and the impaired functioning of representative democracy. The extent of inequality in society is often a consequence of explicit policies and public choice. Reducing income inequality offers the prospect of greater social cohesiveness and better population health.

  14. [The epidemiological approach to health inequalities at the local level].

    PubMed

    Alazraqui, Marcio; Mota, Eduardo; Spinelli, Hugo

    2007-02-01

    What are the advantages and limitations of epidemiology for decreasing health inequalities at the local level? To answer this question, the current article discusses the role of epidemiology. The hypothesis is that epidemiology produces useful knowledge for local management of interventions aimed at reducing health inequalities, expressed in spaces built by human communities through social and historical processes. Local production of epidemiological knowledge should support action by social actors in specific situations and contexts, thus renewing the appreciation for ecological designs and georeference studies. Such knowledge output and application are also an organizational phenomenon. Organizations can be seen as "conversational networks". In conclusion, strategic and communicative actions by health workers should provide the central thrust for defining new health care and management models committed to decreasing health inequalities, with epidemiology playing a key role. PMID:17221081

  15. Miles to go before we sleep: racial inequities in health.

    PubMed

    Williams, David R

    2012-09-01

    Large, pervasive, and persistent racial inequalities exist in the onset, courses, and outcomes of illness. A comprehensive understanding of the patterning of racial disparities indicates that racism in both its institutional and individual forms remains an important determinant. There is an urgent need to build the science base that would identify how to trigger the conditions that would facilitate needed societal change and to identify the optimal interventions that would confront and dismantle the societal conditions that create and sustain health inequalities.

  16. Promoting health equity: WHO health inequality monitoring at global and national levels

    PubMed Central

    Hosseinpoor, Ahmad Reza; Bergen, Nicole; Schlotheuber, Anne

    2015-01-01

    Background Health equity is a priority in the post-2015 sustainable development agenda and other major health initiatives. The World Health Organization (WHO) has a history of promoting actions to achieve equity in health, including efforts to encourage the practice of health inequality monitoring. Health inequality monitoring systems use disaggregated data to identify disadvantaged subgroups within populations and inform equity-oriented health policies, programs, and practices. Objective This paper provides an overview of a number of recent and current WHO initiatives related to health inequality monitoring at the global and/or national level. Design We outline the scope, content, and intended uses/application of the following: Health Equity Monitor database and theme page; State of inequality: reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health report; Handbook on health inequality monitoring: with a focus on low- and middle-income countries; Health inequality monitoring eLearning module; Monitoring health inequality: an essential step for achieving health equity advocacy booklet and accompanying video series; and capacity building workshops conducted in WHO Member States and Regions. Conclusions The paper concludes by considering how the work of the WHO can be expanded upon to promote the establishment of sustainable and robust inequality monitoring systems across a variety of health topics among Member States and at the global level. PMID:26387506

  17. Simulation Models for Socioeconomic Inequalities in Health: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Speybroeck, Niko; Van Malderen, Carine; Harper, Sam; Müller, Birgit; Devleesschauwer, Brecht

    2013-01-01

    Background: The emergence and evolution of socioeconomic inequalities in health involves multiple factors interacting with each other at different levels. Simulation models are suitable for studying such complex and dynamic systems and have the ability to test the impact of policy interventions in silico. Objective: To explore how simulation models were used in the field of socioeconomic inequalities in health. Methods: An electronic search of studies assessing socioeconomic inequalities in health using a simulation model was conducted. Characteristics of the simulation models were extracted and distinct simulation approaches were identified. As an illustration, a simple agent-based model of the emergence of socioeconomic differences in alcohol abuse was developed. Results: We found 61 studies published between 1989 and 2013. Ten different simulation approaches were identified. The agent-based model illustration showed that multilevel, reciprocal and indirect effects of social determinants on health can be modeled flexibly. Discussion and Conclusions: Based on the review, we discuss the utility of using simulation models for studying health inequalities, and refer to good modeling practices for developing such models. The review and the simulation model example suggest that the use of simulation models may enhance the understanding and debate about existing and new socioeconomic inequalities of health frameworks. PMID:24192788

  18. [Social inequalities in health and primary care. SESPAS Report 2012].

    PubMed

    Hernández-Aguado, Ildefonso; Santaolaya Cesteros, María; Campos Esteban, Pilar

    2012-03-01

    The health system is a social determinant of health. Although not the most important determinant of health, the health system's potential contribution to reducing social inequalities in health should not be underestimated. Due to its characteristics, primary health care is well placed to attain equity in health. To make progress in achieving this goal, the main measures to be considered are the removal of barriers to access to services, the provision of care proportionate to need, and engagement in intersectoral work. This article reviews the background and framework for action to tackle social inequalities in health and provides a summary of the primary health care actions that could help to reduce social inequalities in health and are mentioned in the most important national and international documents on health policy. We hope to stimulate debate, promote research in the field and encourage implementation. The proposals are grouped in the following five intervention lines: information systems; participation; training; intersectoral work; and reorientation of health care. Each intervention is ordered according to its targets (population and civil society; primary health team; health center and health area management; and health policy decision-makers).

  19. [The Ineq-Cities research project on urban health inequalities: knowledge dissemination and transfer in Spain].

    PubMed

    Camprubí, Lluís; Díez, Èlia; Morrison, Joana; Borrell, Carme

    2014-01-01

    The Ineq-Cities project analyzed inequalities in mortality in small areas and described interventions to reduce inequalities in health in 16 European cities. This field note describes the dissemination of the project in Spain. In accordance with the recommendations of the project, the objective was to translate relevant results to key stakeholders - mainly technical staff, municipal officers and local social agents - and to provide an introduction to urban inequalities in health and strategies to address them. Twenty-four workshops were given, attended by more than 350 professionals from 92 municipalities. Knowledge dissemination consisted of the publication of a short book on inequalities in health and the approach to this problem in cities and three articles in nonspecialized media, a proposal for a municipal motion, and knowledge dissemination activities in social networks. Users rated these activities highly and stressed the need to systematize these products. This process may have contributed to the inclusion of health inequalities in the political agenda and to the training of officers to correct them.

  20. Inequalities in self-reported health within Spanish Regional Health Services: devolution re-examined?

    PubMed

    Costa-i-Font, Joan

    2005-01-01

    There is evidence of small inter-regional inequalities in both health and health expenditure both before and after the decentralization of the Spanish National Health Service (Spanish NHS). However, it still has not been established whether devolution has exerted any influence on the development of intra-regional inequalities in health. This study examines the existence of socioeconomic health inequalities within the different Spanish healthcare services, using concentration indices. Data were taken from the most recent Encuesta Nacional de Salud (Spanish National Health Survey, 1997) and self-perceived health was used to measure health. It is argued that while inter-regional inequalities in health may have been unaffected by decentralization, intra-regional inequalities may be the undesired consequences of an efficiency-based NHS. The results suggest that devolution may have helped pro-equity policies but only in areas where the private sector is small.

  1. Defining and measuring health inequality: an approach based on the distribution of health expectancy.

    PubMed Central

    Gakidou, E. E.; Murray, C. J.; Frenk, J.

    2000-01-01

    This paper proposes an approach to conceptualizing and operationalizing the measurement of health inequality, defined as differences in health across individuals in the population. We propose that health is an intrinsic component of well-being and thus we should be concerned with inequality in health, whether or not it is correlated with inequality in other dimensions of well-being. In the measurement of health inequality, the complete range of fatal and non-fatal health outcomes should be incorporated. This notion is operationalized through the concept of healthy lifespan. Individual health expectancy is preferable, as a measurement, to individual healthy lifespan, since health expectancy excludes those differences in healthy lifespan that are simply due to chance. In other words, the quantity of interest for studying health inequality is the distribution of health expectancy across individuals in the population. The inequality of the distribution of health expectancy can be summarized by measures of individual/mean differences (differences between the individual and the mean of the population) or inter-individual differences. The exact form of the measure to summarize inequality depends on three normative choices. A firmer understanding of people's views on these normative choices will provide a basis for deliberating on a standard WHO measure of health inequality. PMID:10686732

  2. The Health Effects of Income Inequality: Averages and Disparities.

    PubMed

    Truesdale, Beth C; Jencks, Christopher

    2016-01-01

    Much research has investigated the association of income inequality with average life expectancy, usually finding negative correlations that are not very robust. A smaller body of work has investigated socioeconomic disparities in life expectancy, which have widened in many countries since 1980. These two lines of work should be seen as complementary because changes in average life expectancy are unlikely to affect all socioeconomic groups equally. Although most theories imply long and variable lags between changes in income inequality and changes in health, empirical evidence is confined largely to short-term effects. Rising income inequality can affect individuals in two ways. Direct effects change individuals' own income. Indirect effects change other people's income, which can then change a society's politics, customs, and ideals, altering the behavior even of those whose own income remains unchanged. Indirect effects can thus change both average health and the slope of the relationship between individual income and health.

  3. Research on health inequalities: A bibliometric analysis (1966-2014).

    PubMed

    Bouchard, Louise; Albertini, Marcelo; Batista, Ricardo; de Montigny, Joanne

    2015-09-01

    The objective of this study is to report on research production and publications on health inequalities through a bibliometric analysis covering publications from 1966 to 2014 and a content analysis of the 25 most-cited papers. A database of 49,294 references was compiled from the search engine Web of Science. The first article appears in 1966 and deals with equality and civil rights in the United States and the elimination of racial discrimination in access to medical care. By 2003, the term disparity has gained in prominence relative to the term inequality which was initially elected by the researchers. Marmot's 1991 article is one of the five papers with the largest number of citations and contributes to the central perspective of social determinants of health and the British influence on the international status of research on social inequalities of health. PMID:26259012

  4. The political context of social inequalities and health.

    PubMed

    Navarro, V; Shi, L

    2001-01-01

    This analysis reflects on the importance of political parties, and the policies they implement when in government, in determining the level of equalities/inequalities in a society, the extent of the welfare state (including the level of health care coverage by the state), the employment/unemployment rate, and the level of population health. The study looks at the impact of the major political traditions in the advanced OECD countries during the golden years of capitalism (1945-1980)--social democratic, Christian democratic, liberal, and ex-fascist--in four areas: (1) the main determinants of income inequalities; (2) levels of public expenditures and health care benefits coverage; (3) public support of services to families; and (4) the level of population health as measured by infant mortality. The results indicate that political traditions more committed to redistributive policies (both economic and social) and full-employment policies, such as the social democratic parties, were generally more successful in improving the health of populations. The erroneous assumption of a conflict between social equity and economic efficiency is also discussed. The study aims at filling a void in the growing health and social inequalities literature, which rarely touches on the importance of political forces in influencing inequalities. PMID:11271636

  5. Reducing social inequalities in health: the role of simulation modelling in chronic disease epidemiology to evaluate the impact of population health interventions.

    PubMed

    Smith, Brendan T; Smith, Peter M; Harper, Sam; Manuel, Douglas G; Mustard, Cameron A

    2014-04-01

    Reducing health inequalities has become a major public health priority internationally. However, how best to achieve this goal is not well understood. Population health intervention research has the potential to address some of this knowledge gap. This review argues that simulation studies can produce unique evidence to build the population health intervention research evidence base on reducing social inequalities in health. To this effect, the advantages of using simulation models over other population health intervention research methods are discussed. Key questions regarding the potential challenges of developing simulation models to investigate population health intervention research on reducing social inequalities in health and the types of population health intervention research questions that can be answered using this methodology are reviewed. We use the example of social inequalities in coronary heart disease to illustrate how simulation models can elucidate the effectiveness of a number of 'what-if' counterfactual population health interventions on reducing social inequalities in coronary heart disease. Simulation models are a flexible, cost-effective, evidence-based research method with the capacity to inform public health policy-makers regarding the implementation of population health interventions to reduce social inequalities in health.

  6. [Social and health inequalities in Brazil: scientific production within the Brazilian health care system context].

    PubMed

    dos Santos, Daniel Labernarde; Gerhardt, Tatiana Engel

    2008-03-01

    This paper discusses the relationships between social and health care system inequalities analyzing the approach and operational ways used in scientific studies produced after the foundation of Sistema Unico de Saúde (SUS), the Brazilian health care system. A review was conducted having as framework four internationally indexed Brazilian scientific journals, which publish their papers on-line in the Project Scientific Electronic Library Online (SciELO). All empiric research studies on health produced in Brazil from 1988 onwards were included and eight descriptors were used: social inequalities, health inequalities and health concept. The scientific production on the subject focuses on the fact that differences in health status are a direct result of inequalities in access and use of medical services. At the same time, a strong trend towards dealing with social inequalities through traditional economic indicators, such as income was observed.

  7. Social inequality in health: dichotomy or gradient? A comparative study of problematizations in national public health programmes.

    PubMed

    Vallgårda, Signild

    2008-01-01

    Recent public health programmes from four countries: Denmark, England, Norway, and Sweden, are studied to analyse how social inequality in health is described, explained and suggested to be tackled, i.e., the problematization or the discursive process whereby the issue is framed and made accessible to political action. Social inequality in health is defined in these programmes both as a disadvantaged minority with major health problems, in contrast to the rest of the population, i.e., as a dichotomy; and as a gradient in which health problems are seen as increasing with lower social class or educational level. The causes of health inequality are identified as behaviour, social relations and underlying social structures. Policies aimed at reducing health inequality can be characterized as either in accordance with a residual welfare state model, targeting the disadvantaged, or a universal model, addressing the whole population. All countries have policies that are mixtures of these problematizations, but with some systematic differences between the countries. In this field England resembles the Scandinavian countries, as much as they resemble each other dispelling the idea of a Nordic or Scandinavian welfare state model. PMID:17706317

  8. [Does primary prevention contribute to increase social inequalities in health?].

    PubMed

    Peretti-Watel, P

    2013-08-01

    In France, as in many countries, tackling social inequalities in health is a public health priority. However, primary prevention may sometimes contribute to increase such inequalities. This article aims to illustrate this point, considering the cases of smoking and obesity. The implicit hypotheses of prevention regarding its targets are discussed, as well as its stigmatization effects. On the one hand, prevention can increase the social differentiation of risky behaviors, as it is more effective among wealthier and more educated people. On the other hand, prevention policies intending to increase either the financial or the symbolic cost of risky behaviors may also increase social inequalities. Primary prevention needs more reflexivity regarding its potential unintended and deleterious side effects. PMID:23856510

  9. Miles to Go Before We Sleep: Racial Inequities in Health

    PubMed Central

    Williams, David R.

    2013-01-01

    Large, pervasive and persistent racial inequalities exist in the onset, course and outcomes of illness. A comprehensive understanding of the patterning of racial disparities indicates that racism in both its institutional and individual forms remains an important determinant. Despite our extensive knowledge of the magnitude, trends and determinants of these social inequalities in health, there is still much that we need to learn about the forces that drive them. There is also an even greater opportunity to build the science base that would identify how to trigger the conditions that would facilitate needed societal change, and identify the optimal interventions that would confront and dismantle the societal conditions that create and sustain health inequalities. PMID:22940811

  10. Longitudinal analysis of income-related health inequality.

    PubMed

    Allanson, Paul; Gerdtham, Ulf-G; Petrie, Dennis

    2010-01-01

    This paper considers the characterisation and measurement of income-related health inequality using longitudinal data. The paper elucidates the nature of the Jones and López Nicolás (2004) index of "health-related income mobility" and explains the negative values of the index that have been reported in all the empirical applications to date. The paper further presents an alternative approach to the analysis of longitudinal data that brings out complementary aspects of the evolution of income-related health inequalities over time. In particular, we propose a new index of "income-related health mobility" that measures whether the pattern of health changes is biased in favour of those with initially high or low incomes. We illustrate our work by investigating mobility in the General Health Questionnaire measure of psychological well-being over the first nine waves of the British Household Panel Survey from 1991 to 1999.

  11. Horizontal Inequity in Elderly Health Care Utilization: Evidence from India.

    PubMed

    Joe, William; Rudra, Shalini; Subramanian, S V

    2015-11-01

    Against the backdrop of population aging, this paper presents the analysis of need-standardised health care utilization among elderly in India. Based on nationally representative morbidity and health care survey 2004, we demonstrate that the need for health care utilization is indeed pro-poor in nature. However, the actual health care utilization is concentrated among richer sections of the population. Further, the decomposition analysis reveals that income has a very strong role in shifting the distribution of health care away from the poor elderly. The impact of income on utilization is well-demonstrated even at the ecological-level as states with higher per capita incomes have higher elderly health care utilization even as the levels of need-predicted distribution across these states are similar. We also find that the distribution of elderly across social groups and their educational achievements favours the rich and significantly contributes to overall inequality. Nevertheless, contribution of need-related self-assessed health clearly favours pro-poor inequality. In concluding, we argue that to reduce such inequities in health care utilization it is necessary to increase public investments in health care infrastructure including geriatric care particularly in rural areas and underdeveloped regions to enhance access and quality of health care for the elderly.

  12. Social inequality in health, responsibility and egalitarian justice.

    PubMed

    Marchman Andersen, M; Oksbjerg Dalton, S; Lynch, J; Johansen, C; Holtug, N

    2013-03-01

    Are social inequalities in health unjust when brought about by differences in lifestyle? A widespread idea, luck egalitarianism, is that inequality stemming from individuals' free choices is not to be considered unjust, since individuals, presumably, are themselves responsible for such choices. Thus, to the extent that lifestyles are in fact results of free choices, social inequality in health brought about by these choices is not in tension with egalitarian justice. If this is so, then it may put in question the justification of free and equal access to health care and existing medical research priorities. However, personal responsibility is a highly contested issue and in this article we first consider the case for, and second the case against, personal responsibility for health in light of recent developments in philosophical accounts of responsibility and equality. We suggest-but do not fully establish-that at the most fundamental level people are never responsible in such a way that appeals to individuals' own responsibility can justify inequalities in health.

  13. Trends in public health policies addressing violence against women

    PubMed Central

    Loría, Kattia Rojas; Rosado, Teresa Gutiérrez; Espinosa, Leonor María Cantera; Marrochi, Leda María Marenco; Sánchez, Anna Fernández

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE To analyze the content of policies and action plans within the public healthcare system that addresses the issue of violence against women. METHODS A descriptive and comparative study was conducted on the health policies and plans in Catalonia and Costa Rica from 2005 to 2011. It uses a qualitative methodology with documentary analysis. It is classified by topics that describe and interpret the contents. We considered dimensions, such as principles, strategies, concepts concerning violence against women, health trends, and evaluations. RESULTS Thirteen public policy documents were analyzed. In both countries’ contexts, we have provided an overview of violence against women as a problem whose roots are in gender inequality. The strategies of gender policies that address violence against women are cultural exchange and institutional action within the public healthcare system. The actions of the healthcare sector are expanded into specific plans. The priorities and specificity of actions in healthcare plans were the distinguishing features between the two countries. CONCLUSIONS The common features of the healthcare plans in both the counties include violence against women, use of protocols, detection tasks, care and recovery for women, and professional self-care. Catalonia does not consider healthcare actions with aggressors. Costa Rica has a lower specificity in conceptualization and protocol patterns, as well as a lack of updates concerning health standards in Catalonia. PMID:25210820

  14. Health inequalities: promoting policy changes in utilizing transformation development by empowering African American communities in reducing health disparities.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Bernice Roberts

    2013-01-01

    Social inequalities in the United States resulted in negative health outcomes for the African Americans. Their stressful living conditions of poverty, discrimination, racism, abuse and rejection from American society contribute to their negative health outcomes. The lifestyles of African Americans have been influenced by poverty and prior injustices, which have molded their worldview of health and illness. Dr. Martin Luther King, national civil rights leader, brought about social change with much prayer; however, he went a step further with collective gatherings to include the power of non-violence massive public demonstrations. This paper is an analytical review of the literature addressing social inequalities impacting on health inequalities of African Americans resulting in health disparities. Policy changes are propose by implementing transformation development and community empowerment models as frameworks for community/public health nurses in guiding African American communities with addressing health disparities. These models empower members of the community to participate in a collaborative effort in making political and social changes to improve their overall health outcomes.

  15. Health inequalities: promoting policy changes in utilizing transformation development by empowering African American communities in reducing health disparities.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Bernice Roberts

    2013-01-01

    Social inequalities in the United States resulted in negative health outcomes for the African Americans. Their stressful living conditions of poverty, discrimination, racism, abuse and rejection from American society contribute to their negative health outcomes. The lifestyles of African Americans have been influenced by poverty and prior injustices, which have molded their worldview of health and illness. Dr. Martin Luther King, national civil rights leader, brought about social change with much prayer; however, he went a step further with collective gatherings to include the power of non-violence massive public demonstrations. This paper is an analytical review of the literature addressing social inequalities impacting on health inequalities of African Americans resulting in health disparities. Policy changes are propose by implementing transformation development and community empowerment models as frameworks for community/public health nurses in guiding African American communities with addressing health disparities. These models empower members of the community to participate in a collaborative effort in making political and social changes to improve their overall health outcomes. PMID:24575590

  16. Aboriginal health promotion through addressing employment discrimination.

    PubMed

    Ferdinand, Angeline S; Paradies, Yin; Perry, Ryan; Kelaher, Margaret

    2014-01-01

    The Localities Embracing and Accepting Diversity (LEAD) program aimed to improve the mental health of Aboriginal Victorians by addressing racial discrimination and facilitating social and economic participation. As part of LEAD, Whittlesea Council adopted the Aboriginal Employment Pathways Strategy (AEPS) to increase Aboriginal employment and retention within the organisation. The Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Training Program was developed to build internal cultural competency and skills in recruiting and retaining Aboriginal staff. Analysis of surveys conducted before (pre; n=124) and after (post; n=107) the training program indicated a significant increase in participant understanding across all program objectives and in support of organisational policies to improve Aboriginal recruitment and retention. Participants ended the training with concrete ideas about intended changes, as well as how these changes could be supported by their supervisors and the wider organisation. Significant resources have since been allocated to implementing the AEPS over 5 years. In line with principles underpinning the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-23, particularly the focus on addressing racism as a determinant of health, this paper explores the AEPS and training program as promising approaches to health promotion through addressing barriers to Aboriginal employment. Possible implications for other large organisations are also considered. PMID:25155236

  17. Aboriginal health promotion through addressing employment discrimination.

    PubMed

    Ferdinand, Angeline S; Paradies, Yin; Perry, Ryan; Kelaher, Margaret

    2014-01-01

    The Localities Embracing and Accepting Diversity (LEAD) program aimed to improve the mental health of Aboriginal Victorians by addressing racial discrimination and facilitating social and economic participation. As part of LEAD, Whittlesea Council adopted the Aboriginal Employment Pathways Strategy (AEPS) to increase Aboriginal employment and retention within the organisation. The Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Training Program was developed to build internal cultural competency and skills in recruiting and retaining Aboriginal staff. Analysis of surveys conducted before (pre; n=124) and after (post; n=107) the training program indicated a significant increase in participant understanding across all program objectives and in support of organisational policies to improve Aboriginal recruitment and retention. Participants ended the training with concrete ideas about intended changes, as well as how these changes could be supported by their supervisors and the wider organisation. Significant resources have since been allocated to implementing the AEPS over 5 years. In line with principles underpinning the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan 2013-23, particularly the focus on addressing racism as a determinant of health, this paper explores the AEPS and training program as promising approaches to health promotion through addressing barriers to Aboriginal employment. Possible implications for other large organisations are also considered.

  18. Income Inequities in Health Care Utilization among Adults Aged 50 and Older.

    PubMed

    Penning, Margaret J; Zheng, Chi

    2016-03-01

    Equitable access to and utilization of health services is a primary goal for many health care systems, particularly in countries with universal publicly funded systems. Despite concerns regarding potentially adverse implications of the 1990s' health care policy and other reforms, whether and how income inequalities in service utilization changed remains unclear. This study addressed the impact of income on physician and hospital utilization from 1992-2002 among adults aged 50 and older in British Columbia. Those with lower incomes were found less likely to access general practitioner and specialist services but more likely to access hospital services. Income-related disparities in physician care increased over time; hospital care declined. Volume of GP and hospital care was inversely associated with income; these differences increased regarding GP services only. Findings of declines in hospital-care access, accompanied by increasing income-related disparities in physician-services access, show that inequities are increasing within Canada's health care system.

  19. Income Inequities in Health Care Utilization among Adults Aged 50 and Older.

    PubMed

    Penning, Margaret J; Zheng, Chi

    2016-03-01

    Equitable access to and utilization of health services is a primary goal for many health care systems, particularly in countries with universal publicly funded systems. Despite concerns regarding potentially adverse implications of the 1990s' health care policy and other reforms, whether and how income inequalities in service utilization changed remains unclear. This study addressed the impact of income on physician and hospital utilization from 1992-2002 among adults aged 50 and older in British Columbia. Those with lower incomes were found less likely to access general practitioner and specialist services but more likely to access hospital services. Income-related disparities in physician care increased over time; hospital care declined. Volume of GP and hospital care was inversely associated with income; these differences increased regarding GP services only. Findings of declines in hospital-care access, accompanied by increasing income-related disparities in physician-services access, show that inequities are increasing within Canada's health care system. PMID:26757886

  20. Determinants of MSK health and disability--social determinants of inequities in MSK health.

    PubMed

    Guillemin, Francis; Carruthers, Erin; Li, Linda C

    2014-06-01

    Even in most egalitarian societies, disparities in care exist to the disadvantage of some people with chronic musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders and related disability. These situations translate into inequality in health and health outcomes. The goal of this chapter is to review concepts and determinants associated with health inequity, and the effect of interventions to minimize their impact. Health inequities are avoidable, unnecessary, unfair and unjust. Inequities can occur across the health care continuum, from primary and secondary prevention to diagnosis and treatment. There are many ways to define and identify inequities, according for instance to ethical, philosophical, epidemiological, sociological, economic, or public health points of view. These complementary views can be applied to set a framework of analysis, identify determinants and suggest targets of action against inequity. Most determinants of inequity in MSK disorders are similar to those in the general population and other chronic diseases. People may be exposed to inequity as a result of policies and rules set by the health care system, individuals' demographic characteristics (e.g., education level), or some behavior of health professionals and of patients. Osteoarthritis (OA) represents a typical chronic MSK condition. The PROGRESS-Plus framework is useful for identifying the important role that place of residence, race and ethnicity, occupation, gender, education, socioeconomic status, social capital and networks, age, disability and sexual orientation may have in creating or maintaining inequities in this disease. In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a consideration of international data led to the conclusion that not all RA patients who needed biologic therapy had access to it. The disparity in care was due partly to policies of a country and a health care system, or economic conditions. We conclude this chapter by discussing examples of interventions designed for reducing health inequity. PMID

  1. Health inequalities, physician citizens and professional medical associations: an Australian case study

    PubMed Central

    Furler, John; Harris, Elizabeth; Harris, Mark; Naccarella, Lucio; Young, Doris; Snowdon, Teri

    2007-01-01

    stakeholder and practicing member constituencies. This is an important and necessary step in defining an agreed role for the profession in addressing health inequalities. PMID:17697318

  2. Early childhood development and the social determinants of health inequities.

    PubMed

    Moore, Timothy G; McDonald, Myfanwy; Carlon, Leanne; O'Rourke, Kerryn

    2015-09-01

    Children's health and development outcomes follow a social gradient: the further up the socioeconomic spectrum, the better the outcomes. Based upon a review of multiple forms of evidence, and with a specific focus upon Australia, this article investigates the causes of these socially produced inequities, their impact upon health and development during the early years and what works to reduce these inequities. Using VicHealth's Fair Foundations framework, we report upon child health inequity at three different levels: the socioeconomic, political and cultural level; daily living conditions; the individual health-related behaviours. Although intensive interventions may improve the absolute conditions of significantly disadvantaged children and families, interventions that have been shown to effectively reduce the gap between the best and worst off families are rare. Numerous interventions have been shown to improve some aspect of prenatal, postnatal, family, physical and social environments for young children; however, sustainable or direct effects are difficult to achieve. Inequitable access to services has the potential to maintain or increase inequities during the early years, because those families most in need of services are typically least able to access them. Reducing inequities during early childhood requires a multi-level, multi-faceted response that incorporates: approaches to governance and decision-making; policies that improve access to quality services and facilitate secure, stable, flexible workplaces for parents; service systems that reflect the characteristics of proportionate universalism, function collaboratively, and deliver evidence-based programs in inclusive environments; strong, supportive communities; and information and timely assistance for parents so they feel supported and confident.

  3. Developing Social Marketing Capacity to Address Health Issues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Whitelaw, S.; Smart, E.; Kopela, J.; Gibson, T.; King, V.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: Social marketing is increasingly being seen as a potentially effective means of pursuing health education practice generally and within various specific areas such as mental health and wellbeing and more broadly in tackling health inequalities. This paper aims to report and reflect on the authors' experiences of undertaking a health…

  4. Employment status and income as potential mediators of educational inequalities in population mental health

    PubMed Central

    Niedzwiedz, Claire L.; Popham, Frank

    2016-01-01

    We assessed whether educational inequalities in mental health may be mediated by employment status and household income. Poor mental health was assessed using General Health Questionnaire ‘caseness’ in working age adult participants (N = 48 654) of the Health Survey for England (2001–10). Relative indices of inequality by education level were calculated. Substantial inequalities were apparent, with adjustment for employment status and household income markedly reducing their magnitude. Educational inequalities in mental health were attenuated by employment status. Policy responses to economic recession (such as active labour market interventions) might reduce mental health inequalities but longitudinal research is needed to exclude reverse causation. PMID:27593454

  5. Addressing Risks to Advance Mental Health Research

    PubMed Central

    Iltis, Ana S.; Misra, Sahana; Dunn, Laura B.; Brown, Gregory K.; Campbell, Amy; Earll, Sarah A.; Glowinski, Anne; Hadley, Whitney B.; Pies, Ronald; DuBois, James M.

    2015-01-01

    Objective Risk communication and management are essential to the ethical conduct of research, yet addressing risks may be time consuming for investigators and institutional review boards (IRBs) may reject study designs that appear too risky. This can discourage needed research, particularly in higher risk protocols or those enrolling potentially vulnerable individuals, such as those with some level of suicidality. Improved mechanisms for addressing research risks may facilitate much needed psychiatric research. This article provides mental health researchers with practical approaches to: 1) identify and define various intrinsic research risks; 2) communicate these risks to others (e.g., potential participants, regulatory bodies, society); 3) manage these risks during the course of a study; and 4) justify the risks. Methods As part of a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)-funded scientific meeting series, a public conference and a closed-session expert panel meeting were held on managing and disclosing risks in mental health clinical trials. The expert panel reviewed the literature with a focus on empirical studies and developed recommendations for best practices and further research on managing and disclosing risks in mental health clinical trials. IRB review was not required because there were no human subjects. The NIMH played no role in developing or reviewing the manuscript. Results Challenges, current data, practical strategies, and topics for future research are addressed for each of four key areas pertaining to management and disclosure of risks in clinical trials: identifying and defining risks, communicating risks, managing risks during studies, and justifying research risks. Conclusions Empirical data on risk communication, managing risks, and the benefits of research can support the ethical conduct of mental health research and may help investigators better conceptualize and confront risks and to gain IRB approval. PMID:24173618

  6. Longitudinal analysis of income-related health inequalities: methods, challenges and applications.

    PubMed

    Siegel, Martin; Allanson, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Socioeconomic inequalities in health are an important research area in health economics and public health. The concentration index has become a well-established measure of income-related health inequalities, and a number of approaches to identify potential causes of health inequalities exist. With the increasing availability of suitable longitudinal data, more sophisticated approaches to monitor inequalities and to identify potential causal relationships between socioeconomic status and health evolved. We first review the concentration index and some more basic approaches to explain health inequalities. We then discuss advantages and potential shortcomings of "static" and "dynamic" health inequality measures. We review different concepts of health and socioeconomic mobility, as well as recent studies on the life course perspective and economic changes. Our aim is to provide an overview of the concepts and empirical methodologies in the current literature, and to guide interested researchers in their choice of an appropriate inequality measure.

  7. Understanding wealth-based inequalities in child health in India: a decomposition approach.

    PubMed

    Chalasani, Satvika

    2012-12-01

    India experienced tremendous economic growth since the mid-1980s but this growth was paralleled by sharp rises in economic inequality. Urban areas experienced greater economic growth as well as greater increases in economic inequality than rural areas. During the same period, child health improved on average but socioeconomic differentials in child health persisted. This paper attempts to explain wealth-based inequalities in child mortality and malnutrition using a regression-based decomposition approach. Data for the analysis come from the 1992/93, 1998/99, and 2005/06 Indian National Family Health Surveys. Inequalities in child health are measured using the concentration index. The concentration index for each outcome is then decomposed into the contributions of wealth-based inequality in the observed determinants of child health. Results indicate that mortality inequality declined in urban areas but remained unchanged or increased in rural areas. Malnutrition inequality increased dramatically both in urban and rural areas. The two largest individual/household-level sources of disparities in child health are (i) inequality in the distribution of wealth itself, and (ii) inequality in maternal education. The contributions of observed determinants (i) to neonatal mortality inequality remained unchanged, (ii) to child mortality inequality increased, and (ii) to malnutrition inequality increased. It is possible that the increases in child health inequality reflect urban biases in economic growth, and the mixed performance of public programs that could have otherwise offset the impacts of unequal growth.

  8. Ideological and organizational components of differing public health strategies for addressing the social determinants of health.

    PubMed

    Raphael, Dennis; Brassolotto, Julia; Baldeo, Navindra

    2015-12-01

    Despite a history of conceptual contributions to reducing health inequalities by addressing the social determinants of health (SDH), Canadian governmental authorities have struggled to put these concepts into action. Ontario's-Canada's most populous province-public health scene shows a similar pattern. In statements and reports, governmental ministries, professional associations and local public health units (PHUs) recognize the importance of these issues, yet there has been varying implementation of these concepts into public health activity. The purpose of this study was to gain insight into the key features responsible for differences in SDH-related activities among local PHUs. We interviewed Medical Officers of Health (MOH) and key staff members from nine local PHUs in Ontario varying in SDH activity as to their understandings of the SDH, public health's role in addressing the SDH, and their units' SDH-related activities. We also reviewed their unit's documents and their organizational structures in relation to acting on the SDH. Three clusters of PHUs are identified based on their SDH-related activities: service-delivery-oriented; intersectoral and community-based; and public policy/public education-focused. The two key factors that differentiate PHUs are specific ideological commitments held by MOHs and staff and the organizational structures established to carry out SDH-related activities. The ideological commitments and the organizational structures of the most active PHUs showed congruence with frameworks adopted by national jurisdictions known for addressing health inequalities. These include a structural analysis of the SDH and a centralized organizational structure that coordinates SDH-related activities.

  9. Low income, inequality and health promotion.

    PubMed

    Blackburn, C

    Drawing on reports and statistics that demonstrate the link between health and low income, this article explains how low income can act as a key health hazard and set off a domino effect involving other health hazards such as substandard housing, pollution and poor social support systems. The author argues that we have still some way to go to put a poverty perspective on strategies to promote positive health.

  10. Utility and limitations of measures of health inequities: a theoretical perspective

    PubMed Central

    Alonge, Olakunle; Peters, David H.

    2015-01-01

    Summary box What is already known on this subject? Various measures have been used in quantifying health inequities among populations in recent times; most of these measures were derived to capture the socioeconomic inequalities in health. These different measures do not always lend themselves to common interpretation by policy makers and health managers because they each reflect limited aspects of the concept of health inequities. What does this study add? To inform a more appropriate application of the different measures currently used in quantifying health inequities, this article explicates common theories underlying the definition of health inequities and uses this understanding to show the utility and limitations of these different measures. It also suggests some key features of an ideal indicator based on the conceptual understanding, with the hope of influencing future efforts in developing more robust measures of health inequities. The article also provides a conceptual ‘product label’ for the common measures of health inequities to guide users and ‘consumers’ in making more robust inferences and conclusions. This paper examines common approaches for quantifying health inequities and assesses the extent to which they incorporate key theories necessary for explicating the definition of health inequity. The first theoretical analysis examined the distinction between inter-individual and inter-group health inequalities as measures of health inequities. The second analysis considered the notion of fairness in health inequalities from different philosophical perspectives. To understand the extent to which different measures of health inequities incorporate these theoretical explanations, four criteria were used to assess each measure: 1) Does the indicator demonstrate inter-group or inter-individual health inequalities or both; 2) Does it reflect health inequalities in relation to socioeconomic position; 3) Is it sensitive to the absolute transfer of

  11. Socioeconomic inequality in catastrophic health expenditure in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Boing, Alexandra Crispim; Bertoldi, Andréa Dâmaso; de Barros, Aluísio Jardim Dornellas; Posenato, Leila Garcia; Peres, Karen Glazer

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE To analyze the evolution of catastrophic health expenditure and the inequalities in such expenses, according to the socioeconomic characteristics of Brazilian families. METHODS Data from the National Household Budget 2002-2003 (48,470 households) and 2008-2009 (55,970 households) were analyzed. Catastrophic health expenditure was defined as excess expenditure, considering different methods of calculation: 10.0% and 20.0% of total consumption and 40.0% of the family’s capacity to pay. The National Economic Indicator and schooling were considered as socioeconomic characteristics. Inequality measures utilized were the relative difference between rates, the rates ratio, and concentration index. RESULTS The catastrophic health expenditure varied between 0.7% and 21.0%, depending on the calculation method. The lowest prevalences were noted in relation to the capacity to pay, while the highest, in relation to total consumption. The prevalence of catastrophic health expenditure increased by 25.0% from 2002-2003 to 2008-2009 when the cutoff point of 20.0% relating to the total consumption was considered and by 100% when 40.0% or more of the capacity to pay was applied as the cut-off point. Socioeconomic inequalities in the catastrophic health expenditure in Brazil between 2002-2003 and 2008-2009 increased significantly, becoming 5.20 times higher among the poorest and 4.17 times higher among the least educated. CONCLUSIONS There was an increase in catastrophic health expenditure among Brazilian families, principally among the poorest and those headed by the least-educated individuals, contributing to an increase in social inequality. PMID:25210822

  12. Understanding Health Disparities and Inequities Faced by Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ouellette-Kuntz, Helene

    2005-01-01

    Background: There is an increasing interest in the notion of health disparities, inequities and inequalities in Canada and elsewhere. In Canada, individuals with disabilities represent one of six groups identified as particularly vulnerable to health disparities. Method: This paper combines the literature related to the concepts of inequity and…

  13. Environmental justice and health practices: understanding how health inequities arise at the local level.

    PubMed

    Frohlich, Katherine L; Abel, Thomas

    2014-02-01

    While empirical evidence continues to show that people living in low socio-economic status neighbourhoods are less likely to engage in health-enhancing behaviour, our understanding of why this is so remains less than clear. We suggest that two changes could take place to move from description to understanding in this field; (i) a move away from the established concept of individual health behaviour to a contextualised understanding of health practices; and (ii) a switch from focusing on health inequalities in outcomes to health inequities in conditions. We apply Pierre Bourdieu's theory on capital interaction but find it insufficient with regard to the role of agency for structural change. We therefore introduce Amartya Sen's capability approach as a useful link between capital interaction theory and action to reduce social inequities in health-related practices. Sen's capability theory also elucidates the importance of discussing unequal chances in terms of inequity, rather than inequality, in order to underscore the moral nature of inequalities. We draw on the discussion in social geography on environmental injustice, which also underscores the moral nature of the spatial distribution of opportunities. The article ends by applying this approach to the 'Interdisciplinary study of inequalities in smoking' framework. PMID:24372359

  14. Environmental justice and health practices: understanding how health inequities arise at the local level.

    PubMed

    Frohlich, Katherine L; Abel, Thomas

    2014-02-01

    While empirical evidence continues to show that people living in low socio-economic status neighbourhoods are less likely to engage in health-enhancing behaviour, our understanding of why this is so remains less than clear. We suggest that two changes could take place to move from description to understanding in this field; (i) a move away from the established concept of individual health behaviour to a contextualised understanding of health practices; and (ii) a switch from focusing on health inequalities in outcomes to health inequities in conditions. We apply Pierre Bourdieu's theory on capital interaction but find it insufficient with regard to the role of agency for structural change. We therefore introduce Amartya Sen's capability approach as a useful link between capital interaction theory and action to reduce social inequities in health-related practices. Sen's capability theory also elucidates the importance of discussing unequal chances in terms of inequity, rather than inequality, in order to underscore the moral nature of inequalities. We draw on the discussion in social geography on environmental injustice, which also underscores the moral nature of the spatial distribution of opportunities. The article ends by applying this approach to the 'Interdisciplinary study of inequalities in smoking' framework.

  15. Income-related inequality in health and health-related behaviour: exploring the equalisation hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Vallejo-Torres, Laura; Hale, Daniel; Morris, Stephen; Viner, Russell M

    2014-01-01

    Background Previous studies have found the socioeconomic gradient in health among adolescents to be lower than that observed during childhood and adulthood. The aim of this study was to examine income-related inequalities in health and health-related behaviour across the lifespan in England to explore ‘equalisation’ in adolescence. Methods We used five years of data (2006–2010) from the Health Survey for England to explore inequalities in six indicators: self-assessed general health, longstanding illness, limiting longstanding illness, psychosocial wellbeing, obesity and smoking status. We ran separate analyses by age/gender groups. Inequality was measured using concentration indices. Results Our findings for longstanding illnesses, psychosocial wellbeing and obesity were consistent with the equalisation hypothesis. For these indicators, the extent of income-related inequality was lower among late adolescents (16–19 years) and young adults (20–24 years) compared to children and young adolescents (under 15 years), mid- and late-adults (25–44 and 45–64 years) and the elderly (65+ years). The remaining indicators showed lower inequality among adolescents compared to adults, but higher inequality when compared with children. Conclusions Our work shows that inequalities occur across the life-course but that for some health issues there may be a period of equalisation in late adolescence and early adulthood. PMID:24619989

  16. The effects of community income inequality on health: Evidence from a randomized control trial in the Bolivian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Undurraga, Eduardo A; Behrman, Jere R; Leonard, William R; Godoy, Ricardo A

    2016-01-01

    Research suggests that poorer people have worse health than the better-off and, more controversially, that income inequality harms health. But causal interpretations suffer from endogeneity. We addressed the gap by using a randomized control trial among a society of forager-farmers in the Bolivian Amazon. Treatments included one-time unconditional income transfers (T1) to all households and (T2) only to the poorest 20% of households, with other villages as controls. We assessed the effects of income inequality, absolute income, and spillovers within villages on self-reported health, objective indicators of health and nutrition, and adults' substance consumption. Most effects came from relative income. Targeted transfers increased the perceived stress of participants in better-off households. Evidence suggests increased work efforts among better-off households when the lot of the poor improved, possibly due to a preference for rank preservation. The study points to new paths by which inequality might affect health. PMID:26706403

  17. The effects of community income inequality on health: Evidence from a randomized control trial in the Bolivian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Undurraga, Eduardo A; Behrman, Jere R; Leonard, William R; Godoy, Ricardo A

    2016-01-01

    Research suggests that poorer people have worse health than the better-off and, more controversially, that income inequality harms health. But causal interpretations suffer from endogeneity. We addressed the gap by using a randomized control trial among a society of forager-farmers in the Bolivian Amazon. Treatments included one-time unconditional income transfers (T1) to all households and (T2) only to the poorest 20% of households, with other villages as controls. We assessed the effects of income inequality, absolute income, and spillovers within villages on self-reported health, objective indicators of health and nutrition, and adults' substance consumption. Most effects came from relative income. Targeted transfers increased the perceived stress of participants in better-off households. Evidence suggests increased work efforts among better-off households when the lot of the poor improved, possibly due to a preference for rank preservation. The study points to new paths by which inequality might affect health.

  18. Social inequalities in health in nonhuman primates.

    PubMed

    Shively, Carol A; Day, Stephen M

    2015-01-01

    Overall health has been linked to socioeconomic status, with the gap between social strata increasing each year. Studying the impact of social position on health and biological functioning in nonhuman primates has allowed researchers to model the human condition while avoiding ethical complexities or other difficulties characteristic of human studies. Using female cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis), our lab has examined the link between social status and stress for 30 years. Female nonhuman primates are especially sensitive to social stressors which can deleteriously affect reproductive health, leading to harmful consequences to their overall health. Subordinates have lower progesterone concentrations during the luteal phase of menstrual cycle, which is indicative of absence or impairment of ovulation. Subordinate animals receive more aggression, less affiliative attention, and are more likely to exhibit depressive behaviors. They also express higher stress-related biomarkers such as increased heart rates and lower mean cortisol. While no differences in body weight between dominant and subordinate animals are observed, subordinates have lower bone density and more visceral fat than their dominant counterparts. The latter increases risk for developing inflammatory diseases. Differences are also observed in neurological and autonomic function. A growing body of data suggests that diet composition may amplify or diminish physiological stress responses which have deleterious effects on health. More experimental investigation of the health effects of diet pattern is needed to further elucidate these differences in an ongoing search to find realistic and long-term solutions to the declining health of individuals living across the ever widening socioeconomic spectrum.

  19. Social inequalities in health in nonhuman primates

    PubMed Central

    Shively, Carol A.; Day, Stephen M.

    2014-01-01

    Overall health has been linked to socioeconomic status, with the gap between social strata increasing each year. Studying the impact of social position on health and biological functioning in nonhuman primates has allowed researchers to model the human condition while avoiding ethical complexities or other difficulties characteristic of human studies. Using female cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis), our lab has examined the link between social status and stress for 30 years. Female nonhuman primates are especially sensitive to social stressors which can deleteriously affect reproductive health, leading to harmful consequences to their overall health. Subordinates have lower progesterone concentrations during the luteal phase of menstrual cycle, which is indicative of absence or impairment of ovulation. Subordinate animals receive more aggression, less affiliative attention, and are more likely to exhibit depressive behaviors. They also express higher stress-related biomarkers such as increased heart rates and lower mean cortisol. While no differences in body weight between dominant and subordinate animals are observed, subordinates have lower bone density and more visceral fat than their dominant counterparts. The latter increases risk for developing inflammatory diseases. Differences are also observed in neurological and autonomic function. A growing body of data suggests that diet composition may amplify or diminish physiological stress responses which have deleterious effects on health. More experimental investigation of the health effects of diet pattern is needed to further elucidate these differences in an ongoing search to find realistic and long-term solutions to the declining health of individuals living across the ever widening socioeconomic spectrum. PMID:27589665

  20. Social inequalities in health in nonhuman primates.

    PubMed

    Shively, Carol A; Day, Stephen M

    2015-01-01

    Overall health has been linked to socioeconomic status, with the gap between social strata increasing each year. Studying the impact of social position on health and biological functioning in nonhuman primates has allowed researchers to model the human condition while avoiding ethical complexities or other difficulties characteristic of human studies. Using female cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis), our lab has examined the link between social status and stress for 30 years. Female nonhuman primates are especially sensitive to social stressors which can deleteriously affect reproductive health, leading to harmful consequences to their overall health. Subordinates have lower progesterone concentrations during the luteal phase of menstrual cycle, which is indicative of absence or impairment of ovulation. Subordinate animals receive more aggression, less affiliative attention, and are more likely to exhibit depressive behaviors. They also express higher stress-related biomarkers such as increased heart rates and lower mean cortisol. While no differences in body weight between dominant and subordinate animals are observed, subordinates have lower bone density and more visceral fat than their dominant counterparts. The latter increases risk for developing inflammatory diseases. Differences are also observed in neurological and autonomic function. A growing body of data suggests that diet composition may amplify or diminish physiological stress responses which have deleterious effects on health. More experimental investigation of the health effects of diet pattern is needed to further elucidate these differences in an ongoing search to find realistic and long-term solutions to the declining health of individuals living across the ever widening socioeconomic spectrum. PMID:27589665

  1. Public health approach to address maternal mortality.

    PubMed

    Rai, Sanjay K; Anand, K; Misra, Puneet; Kant, Shashi; Upadhyay, Ravi Prakash

    2012-01-01

    Reducing maternal mortality is one of the major challenges to health systems worldwide, more so in developing countries that account for nearly 99% of these maternal deaths. Lack of a standard method for reporting of maternal death poses a major hurdle in making global comparisons. Currently much of the focus is on documenting the "number" of maternal deaths and delineating the "medical causes" behind these deaths. There is a need to acknowledge the social correlates of maternal deaths as well. Investigating and in-depth understanding of each maternal death can provide indications on practical ways of addressing the problem. Death of a mother has serious implications for the child as well as other family members and to prevent the same, a comprehensive approach is required. This could include providing essential maternal care, early management of complications and good quality intrapartum care through the involvement of skilled birth attendants. Ensuring the availability, affordability, and accessibility of quality maternal health services, including emergency obstetric care (EmOC) would prove pivotal in reducing the maternal deaths. To increase perceived seriousness of the community regarding maternal health, a well-structured awareness campaign is needed with importance be given to avoid adolescent pregnancy as well. Initiatives like Janani Surakhsha Yojna (JSY) that have the potential to improve maternal health needs to be strengthened. Quality assessments should form an essential part of all services that are directed toward improving maternal health. Further, emphasis needs to be given on research by involving multiple allied partners, with the aim to develop a prioritized, coordinated, and innovative research agenda for women's health. PMID:23229211

  2. Reducing Health Inequities in the U.S.: Recommendations From the NHLBI's Health Inequities Think Tank Meeting.

    PubMed

    Sampson, Uchechukwu K A; Kaplan, Robert M; Cooper, Richard S; Diez Roux, Ana V; Marks, James S; Engelgau, Michael M; Peprah, Emmanuel; Mishoe, Helena; Boulware, L Ebony; Felix, Kaytura L; Califf, Robert M; Flack, John M; Cooper, Lisa A; Gracia, J Nadine; Henderson, Jeffrey A; Davidson, Karina W; Krishnan, Jerry A; Lewis, Tené T; Sanchez, Eduardo; Luban, Naomi L; Vaccarino, Viola; Wong, Winston F; Wright, Jackson T; Meyers, David; Ogedegbe, Olugbenga G; Presley-Cantrell, Letitia; Chambers, David A; Belis, Deshirée; Bennett, Glen C; Boyington, Josephine E; Creazzo, Tony L; de Jesus, Janet M; Krishnamurti, Chitra; Lowden, Mia R; Punturieri, Antonello; Shero, Susan T; Young, Neal S; Zou, Shimian; Mensah, George A

    2016-08-01

    The National, Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute convened a Think Tank meeting to obtain insight and recommendations regarding the objectives and design of the next generation of research aimed at reducing health inequities in the United States. The panel recommended several specific actions, including: 1) embrace broad and inclusive research themes; 2) develop research platforms that optimize the ability to conduct informative and innovative research, and promote systems science approaches; 3) develop networks of collaborators and stakeholders, and launch transformative studies that can serve as benchmarks; 4) optimize the use of new data sources, platforms, and natural experiments; and 5) develop unique transdisciplinary training programs to build research capacity. Confronting health inequities will require engaging multiple disciplines and sectors (including communities), using systems science, and intervening through combinations of individual, family, provider, health system, and community-targeted approaches. Details of the panel's remarks and recommendations are provided in this report. PMID:27470459

  3. Reducing Health Inequities in the U.S.: Recommendations From the NHLBI's Health Inequities Think Tank Meeting.

    PubMed

    Sampson, Uchechukwu K A; Kaplan, Robert M; Cooper, Richard S; Diez Roux, Ana V; Marks, James S; Engelgau, Michael M; Peprah, Emmanuel; Mishoe, Helena; Boulware, L Ebony; Felix, Kaytura L; Califf, Robert M; Flack, John M; Cooper, Lisa A; Gracia, J Nadine; Henderson, Jeffrey A; Davidson, Karina W; Krishnan, Jerry A; Lewis, Tené T; Sanchez, Eduardo; Luban, Naomi L; Vaccarino, Viola; Wong, Winston F; Wright, Jackson T; Meyers, David; Ogedegbe, Olugbenga G; Presley-Cantrell, Letitia; Chambers, David A; Belis, Deshirée; Bennett, Glen C; Boyington, Josephine E; Creazzo, Tony L; de Jesus, Janet M; Krishnamurti, Chitra; Lowden, Mia R; Punturieri, Antonello; Shero, Susan T; Young, Neal S; Zou, Shimian; Mensah, George A

    2016-08-01

    The National, Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute convened a Think Tank meeting to obtain insight and recommendations regarding the objectives and design of the next generation of research aimed at reducing health inequities in the United States. The panel recommended several specific actions, including: 1) embrace broad and inclusive research themes; 2) develop research platforms that optimize the ability to conduct informative and innovative research, and promote systems science approaches; 3) develop networks of collaborators and stakeholders, and launch transformative studies that can serve as benchmarks; 4) optimize the use of new data sources, platforms, and natural experiments; and 5) develop unique transdisciplinary training programs to build research capacity. Confronting health inequities will require engaging multiple disciplines and sectors (including communities), using systems science, and intervening through combinations of individual, family, provider, health system, and community-targeted approaches. Details of the panel's remarks and recommendations are provided in this report.

  4. [Beyond the numbers barrier: racial inequalities and health].

    PubMed

    Lopes, Fernanda

    2005-01-01

    The point of departure for this article was the concept of health as a set of comprehensive and collective living conditions, influenced by the political, socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental context. The work thus shows that studies on health inequalities, disparities, or iniquities should extend beyond statistical data, since racism is not always explicit and measurable in social interactions. It is necessary to analyze the various life experiences of blacks and non-blacks in a given social condition, considering gender, age, place of residence, schooling, family origin, occupation, income, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, capacities and incapacities, social network, and possibilities for accessing social goods and services. Finally, the article lists guidelines that can assist in the major challenge of drafting public policies to combat and eradicate the immense inequalities between whites and blacks. PMID:16158167

  5. [Beyond the numbers barrier: racial inequalities and health].

    PubMed

    Lopes, Fernanda

    2005-01-01

    The point of departure for this article was the concept of health as a set of comprehensive and collective living conditions, influenced by the political, socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental context. The work thus shows that studies on health inequalities, disparities, or iniquities should extend beyond statistical data, since racism is not always explicit and measurable in social interactions. It is necessary to analyze the various life experiences of blacks and non-blacks in a given social condition, considering gender, age, place of residence, schooling, family origin, occupation, income, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, capacities and incapacities, social network, and possibilities for accessing social goods and services. Finally, the article lists guidelines that can assist in the major challenge of drafting public policies to combat and eradicate the immense inequalities between whites and blacks.

  6. [Inequity and health in the workplace: exploring an emergent area].

    PubMed

    Haro-García, Luis; Aguilar-Madrid, Guadalupe; Juárez-Pérez, Cuauhtémoc A; Aguilar-Rodríguez, Sara D; Flores-Carbajal, Guillermo; Gea-Izquierdo, Enrique; Sánchez-Román, Francisco R

    2013-01-01

    Work, under fair employment and decent work, reduces inequities in health. Nowadays it seems, however, that obtaining and carrying out a job and worker performance take precedence over the aforementioned attributes. Workers are not only exposed to accidents, diseases caused by various agents, ergonomic and psychosocial risks but also affected by work modes imposed by the "wildmarket", such as the lack of social security benefits. Member countries of the International Labour Organization (ILO) should institute occupational health and safety policies in order to reduce the above mentioned inequities. Nonetheless, governments, which would guarantee such policies, seem to have become intermediaries in favor of large corporations. It is essential to define and strengthen actions that create jobs in decent and appropriate conditions with a view to generating equity, equality, and social well-being. PMID:24448947

  7. [Inequity and health in the workplace: exploring an emergent area].

    PubMed

    Haro-García, Luis; Aguilar-Madrid, Guadalupe; Juárez-Pérez, Cuauhtémoc A; Aguilar-Rodríguez, Sara D; Flores-Carbajal, Guillermo; Gea-Izquierdo, Enrique; Sánchez-Román, Francisco R

    2013-01-01

    Work, under fair employment and decent work, reduces inequities in health. Nowadays it seems, however, that obtaining and carrying out a job and worker performance take precedence over the aforementioned attributes. Workers are not only exposed to accidents, diseases caused by various agents, ergonomic and psychosocial risks but also affected by work modes imposed by the "wildmarket", such as the lack of social security benefits. Member countries of the International Labour Organization (ILO) should institute occupational health and safety policies in order to reduce the above mentioned inequities. Nonetheless, governments, which would guarantee such policies, seem to have become intermediaries in favor of large corporations. It is essential to define and strengthen actions that create jobs in decent and appropriate conditions with a view to generating equity, equality, and social well-being.

  8. Child health inequalities and its dimensions in Pakistan

    PubMed Central

    Murtaza, Fowad; Mustafa, Tajammal; Awan, Rabia

    2015-01-01

    Background and Objective: Poverty and inequality in health is pervasive in Pakistan. The provisions and conditions of health are very dismal. A significant proportion of the population (16.34%) of Pakistan is under 5 years, but Pakistan is in the bottom 5% of countries in the world in terms of spending on health and education. It is ranked the lowest in the world with sub-Sahara Africa in terms of child health equality. The objective of this study was to examine child health inequalities in Pakistan. Materials and Methods: We analyzed data from Pakistan Integrated Household Survey/Household Integrated Economic Survey 2001–2002, collected by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, Government of Pakistan. Coverage of diarrhea and immunization were used as indicators of child health. Stata 11.0 was used for data analysis. Descriptive statistics including frequency distribution and proportions for categorical variables and mean for continuous variables were computed. Results: Children under 5 years of age account for about 16.34% of the total population, 11.76% (2.5 million) of whom suffered from diarrhea in 1-month. The average duration of a diarrheal episode was 7 days. About 72% of the children who had diarrhea lived in a house without pipe-borne water supply. Around 22% children who had diarrhea had no advice or treatment. More than one-third of the households had no toilet in the house, and only 29% of the households were connected with pipe-borne drinking water. About 7.73% (1.6 million) children had never been immunized. The main reason for nonimmunization was parents’ lack of knowledge and of immunization. Conclusion: Child health inequalities in Pakistan are linked with several factors such as severe poverty, illiteracy, lack of knowledge, and awareness of child healthcare, singularly inadequate provision of health services, and poor infrastructure. PMID:26392798

  9. Inequity in India: the case of maternal and reproductive health

    PubMed Central

    Sanneving, Linda; Trygg, Nadja; Saxena, Deepak; Mavalankar, Dileep; Thomsen, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Background Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 5 is focused on reducing maternal mortality and achieving universal access to reproductive health care. India has made extensive efforts to achieve MDG 5 and in some regions much progress has been achieved. Progress has been uneven and inequitable however, and many women still lack access to maternal and reproductive health care. Objective In this review, a framework developed by the Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH) is used to categorize and explain determinants of inequity in maternal and reproductive health in India. Design A review of peer-reviewed, published literature was conducted using the electronic databases PubMed and Popline. The search was performed using a carefully developed list of search terms designed to capture published papers from India on: 1) maternal and reproductive health, and 2) equity, including disadvantaged populations. A matrix was developed to sort the relevant information, which was extracted and categorized based on the CSDH framework. In this way, the main sources of inequity in maternal and reproductive health in India and their inter-relationships were determined. Results Five main structural determinants emerged from the analysis as important in understanding equity in India: economic status, gender, education, social status (registered caste or tribe), and age (adolescents). These five determinants were found to be closely interrelated, a feature which was reflected in the literature. Conclusion In India, economic status, gender, and social status are all closely interrelated when influencing use of and access to maternal and reproductive health care. Appropriate attention should be given to how these social determinants interplay in generating and sustaining inequity when designing policies and programs to reach equitable progress toward improved maternal and reproductive health. PMID:23561028

  10. Disaggregating health inequalities within Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2002-2010, by applying an urban health inequality index.

    PubMed

    Bortz, Martin; Kano, Megumi; Ramroth, Heribert; Barcellos, Christovam; Weaver, Scott R; Rothenberg, Richard; Magalhães, Monica

    2015-11-01

    An urban health index (UHI) was used to quantify health inequalities within Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for the years 2002-2010. Eight main health indicators were generated at the ward level using mortality data. The indicators were combined to form the index. The distribution of the rank ordered UHI-values provides information on inequality among wards, using the ratio of the extremes and the gradient of the middle values. Over the decade the ratio of extremes in 2010 declined relative to 2002 (1.57 vs. 1.32) as did the slope of the middle values (0.23 vs. 0.16). A spatial division between the affluent south and the deprived north and east is still visible. The UHI correlated on an ecological ward-level with socioeconomic and urban environment indicators like square meter price of apartments (0.54, p < 0.01), low education of mother (-0.61, p < 0.01), low income (-0.62, p < 0.01) and proportion of black ethnicity (-0.55, p < 0.01). The results suggest that population health and equity have improved in Rio de Janeiro in the last decade though some familiar patterns of spatial inequality remain. PMID:26648367

  11. Disaggregating health inequalities within Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2002-2010, by applying an urban health inequality index

    PubMed Central

    Bortz, Martin; Kano, Megumi; Ramroth, Heribert; Barcellos, Christovam; Weaver, Scott R.; Rothenberg, Richard; Magalhães, Monica

    2016-01-01

    An urban health index (UHI) was used to quantify health inequalities within Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for the years 2002-2010. Eight main health indicators were generated at the ward level using mortality data. The indicators were combined to form the index. The distribution of the rank ordered UHI-values provides information on inequality among wards, using the ratio of the extremes and the gradient of the middle values. Over the decade the ratio of extremes in 2010 declined relative to 2002 (1.57 vs. 1.32) as did the slope of the middle values (0.23 vs. 0.16). A spatial division between the affluent south and the deprived north and east is still visible. The UHI correlated on an ecological ward-level with socioeconomic and urban environment indicators like square meter price of apartments (0.54, p < 0.01), low education of mother (-0.61, p < 0.01), low income (-0.62, p < 0.01) and proportion of black ethnicity (-0.55, p < 0.01). The results suggest that population health and equity have improved in Rio de Janeiro in the last decade though some familiar patterns of spatial inequality remain. PMID:26648367

  12. Employment conditions and health inequities: a case study of Brazil.

    PubMed

    Dias, Elizabeth Costa; Oliveira, Roberval Passos de; Machado, Jorge H; Minayo-Gomez, Carlos; Perez, Marco Antonio Gomes; Hoefel, Maria da Graça L; Santana, Vilma Sousa

    2011-12-01

    This paper was prepared for the Employment Conditions and Health Inequalities Knowledge Network (EMCONET), part of the WHO Commission on the Social Determinants of Health. We describe the Brazilian context of employment conditions, labor conditions and health, their characteristics and causal relationships. The social, political and economic factors that influence these relationships are also presented with an emphasis on social inequalities, and how they are reproduced within the labor market and thereby affect the health and wellbeing of workers. A literature review was conducted in SciELO, LILACS, Google and Google Scholar, MEDLINE and the CAPES Brazilian thesis database. We observed that there are more workers operating in the informal sector than in the formal sector and these former have no social insurance or any other social benefits. Work conditions and health are poor in both informal and formal enterprises since health and safety labor norms are not effective. The involvement of social movements and labor unions in the elaboration and management of workers' health polices and programs with universal coverage, is a promising initiative that is underway nationwide.

  13. Men's health: a population-based study on social inequalities.

    PubMed

    Bastos, Tássia Fraga; Alves, Maria Cecília Goi Porto; Barros, Marilisa Berti de Azevedo; Cesar, Chester Luiz Galvão

    2012-11-01

    This study evaluates social inequalities in health according to level of schooling in the male population. This was a cross-sectional, population-based study with a sample of 449 men ranging from 20 to 59 years of age and living in Campinas, São Paulo State, Brazil. The chi-square test was used to verify associations, and a Poisson regression model was used to estimate crude and adjusted prevalence ratios. Men with less schooling showed higher rates of alcohol consumption and dependence, smoking, sedentary lifestyle during leisure time, and less healthy eating habits, in addition to higher prevalence of bad or very bad self-rated health, at least one chronic disease, hypertension, and other health problems. No differences were detected between the two schooling strata in terms of use of health services, except for dental services. The findings point to social inequality in health-related behaviors and in some health status indicators. However, possible equity was observed in the use of nearly all types of health services.

  14. Health sector reform in Brazil: a case study of inequity.

    PubMed

    Almeida, C; Travassos, C; Porto, S; Labra, M E

    2000-01-01

    Health sector reform in Brazil built the Unified Health System according to a dense body of administrative instruments for organizing decentralized service networks and institutionalizing a complex decision-making arena. This article focuses on the equity in health care services. Equity is defined as a principle governing distributive functions designed to reduce or offset socially unjust inequalities, and it is applied to evaluate the distribution of financial resources and the use of health services. Even though in the Constitution the term "equity" refers to equal opportunity of access for equal needs, the implemented policies have not guaranteed these rights. Underfunding, fiscal stress, and lack of priorities for the sector have contributed to a progressive deterioration of health care services, with continuing regressive tax collection and unequal distribution of financial resources among regions. The data suggest that despite regulatory measures to increase efficiency and reduce inequalities, delivery of health care services remains extremely unequal across the country. People in lower income groups experience more difficulties in getting access to health services. Utilization rates vary greatly by type of service among income groups, positions in the labor market, and levels of education.

  15. Is Income Inequality a Determinant of Population Health? Part 1. A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, John; Smith, George Davey; Harper, Sam; Hillemeier, Marianne; Ross, Nancy; Kaplan, George A; Wolfson, Michael

    2004-01-01

    This article reviews 98 aggregate and multilevel studies examining the associations between income inequality and health. Overall, there seems to be little support for the idea that income inequality is a major, generalizable determinant of population health differences within or between rich countries. Income inequality may, however, directly influence some health outcomes, such as homicide in some contexts. The strongest evidence for direct health effects is among states in the United States, but even that is somewhat mixed. Despite little support for a direct effect of income inequality on health per se, reducing income inequality by raising the incomes of the most disadvantaged will improve their health, help reduce health inequalities, and generally improve population health. PMID:15016244

  16. Is income inequality a determinant of population health? Part 1. A systematic review.

    PubMed

    Lynch, John; Smith, George Davey; Harper, Sam; Hillemeier, Marianne; Ross, Nancy; Kaplan, George A; Wolfson, Michael

    2004-01-01

    This article reviews 98 aggregate and multilevel studies examining the associations between income inequality and health. Overall, there seems to be little support for the idea that income inequality is a major, generalizable determinant of population health differences within or between rich countries. Income inequality may, however, directly influence some health outcomes, such as homicide in some contexts. The strongest evidence for direct health effects is among states in the United States, but even that is somewhat mixed. Despite little support for a direct effect of income inequality on health per se, reducing income inequality by raising the incomes of the most disadvantaged will improve their health, help reduce health inequalities, and generally improve population health.

  17. Socioeconomic inequalities in health after age 50: Are health risk behaviors to blame?

    PubMed Central

    Shaw, Benjamin A.; McGeever, Kelly; Grubert, Elizabeth; Agahi, Neda; Fors, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that socioeconomic inequalities in health extend into the elderly population, even within the most highly developed welfare states. One potential explanation for socioeconomic inequalities in health focuses on the role of health behaviors, but little is known about the degree to which health behaviors account for health inequalities among older adults, in particular. Using data from the Health and Retirement Study (N=19,245), this study examined the degree to which four behavioral risk factors – smoking, obesity, physical inactivity, and heavy drinking – are associated with socioeconomic position among adults aged 51 and older, and whether these behaviors mediate socioeconomic differences in mortality, and the onset of disability among those who were disability-free at baseline, over a 10-year period from 1998–2008. Results indicate that the odds of both smoking and physical inactivity are higher among persons with lower wealth, with similar stratification in obesity, but primarily among women. The odds of heavy drinking decrease at lower levels of wealth. Significant socioeconomic inequalities in mortality and disability onset are apparent among older men and women; however, the role that health behaviors play in accounting for these inequalities differs by age and gender. For example, these health behaviors account for between 23–45% of the mortality disparities among men and middle aged women, but only about 5% of the disparities found among women over 65 years. Meanwhile, these health behaviors appear to account for about 33% of the disparities in disability onset found among women survivors, and about 9–14% among men survivors. These findings suggest that within the U.S. elderly population, behavioral risks such as smoking and physical inactivity contribute moderately to maintaining socioeconomic inequalities in health. As such, promoting healthier lifestyles among the socioeconomically disadvantaged older adults should help

  18. Difference in health inequity between two population groups due to a social determinant of health.

    PubMed

    Moonesinghe, Ramal; Bouye, Karen; Penman-Aguilar, Ana

    2014-01-01

    The World Health Organization defines social determinants of health as "complex, integrated, and overlapping social structures and economic systems" that are responsible for most health inequities. Similar to the individual-level risk factors such as behavioral and biological risk factors that influence disease, we consider social determinants of health such as the distribution of income, wealth, influence and power as risk factors for risk of disease. We operationally define health inequity in a disease within a population due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable as the difference between the disease outcome with and without the risk factor in the population. We derive expressions for difference in health inequity between two populations due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable for a given disease. The difference in heath inequity between two population groups due to a risk factor increases with increasing difference in relative risks and the difference in prevalence of the risk factor in the two populations. The difference in health inequity could be larger than the difference in health outcomes between the two populations in some situations. Compared to health disparities which are typically measured and monitored using absolute or relative disparities of health outcomes, the methods presented in this manuscript provide a different, yet complementary, picture because they parse out the contributions of unfair and avoidable risk factors. PMID:25522048

  19. Difference in health inequity between two population groups due to a social determinant of health.

    PubMed

    Moonesinghe, Ramal; Bouye, Karen; Penman-Aguilar, Ana

    2014-12-16

    The World Health Organization defines social determinants of health as "complex, integrated, and overlapping social structures and economic systems" that are responsible for most health inequities. Similar to the individual-level risk factors such as behavioral and biological risk factors that influence disease, we consider social determinants of health such as the distribution of income, wealth, influence and power as risk factors for risk of disease. We operationally define health inequity in a disease within a population due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable as the difference between the disease outcome with and without the risk factor in the population. We derive expressions for difference in health inequity between two populations due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable for a given disease. The difference in heath inequity between two population groups due to a risk factor increases with increasing difference in relative risks and the difference in prevalence of the risk factor in the two populations. The difference in health inequity could be larger than the difference in health outcomes between the two populations in some situations. Compared to health disparities which are typically measured and monitored using absolute or relative disparities of health outcomes, the methods presented in this manuscript provide a different, yet complementary, picture because they parse out the contributions of unfair and avoidable risk factors.

  20. Education policies and health inequalities: evidence from changes in the distribution of Body Mass Index in France, 1981-2003.

    PubMed

    Etile, Fabrice

    2014-03-01

    This paper contributes to the debate over the effectiveness of education policies in reducing overall health inequalities as compared to public health actions directed at the less-educated. Recentered Influence Function (RIF) regressions are used to decompose the contribution of education to the changing distribution of Body Mass Index (BMI) in France, between 1981 and 2003, into a composition effect (the shift in population education due to a massive educational expansion), and a structure effect (a changing educational gradient in BMI). Educational expansion has reduced overall BMI inequality by 3.4% for women and 2.3% for men. However, the structure effect on its own has produced a 10.9% increase in overall inequality for women, due to a steeper education gradient starting from the second quartile of the distribution. This structure effect on overall inequality is also large (7.6%) for men, albeit insignificant as it remains concentrated in the last decile. Educational expansion policies can thus reduce overall BMI inequalities; but attention must still be paid to the BMI gradient in education even for policies addressing overall rather than socioeconomic health inequalities.

  1. World health inequality: convergence, divergence, and development.

    PubMed

    Clark, Rob

    2011-02-01

    Recent studies characterize the last half of the twentieth century as an era of cross-national health convergence, with some attributing welfare gains in the developing world to economic growth. In this study, I examine the extent to which welfare outcomes have actually converged and the extent to which economic development is responsible for the observed trends. Drawing from estimates covering 195 nations during the 1955-2005 period, I find that life expectancy averages converged during this time, but that infant mortality rates continuously diverged. I develop a narrative that implicates economic development in these contrasting trends, suggesting that health outcomes follow a "welfare Kuznets curve." Among poor countries, economic development improves life expectancy more than it reduces infant mortality, whereas the situation is reversed among wealthier nations. In this way, development has contributed to both convergence in life expectancy and divergence in infant mortality. Drawing from 674 observations across 163 countries during the 1980-2005 period, I find that the positive effect of GDP PC on life expectancy attenuates at higher levels of development, while the negative effect of GDP PC on infant mortality grows stronger.

  2. A systematic review of the relationships between social capital and socioeconomic inequalities in health: a contribution to understanding the psychosocial pathway of health inequalities

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Recent research on health inequalities moves beyond illustrating the importance of psychosocial factors for health to a more in-depth study of the specific psychosocial pathways involved. Social capital is a concept that captures both a buffer function of the social environment on health, as well as potential negative effects arising from social inequality and exclusion. This systematic review assesses the current evidence, and identifies gaps in knowledge, on the associations and interactions between social capital and socioeconomic inequalities in health. Methods Through this systematic review we identified studies on the interactions between social capital and socioeconomic inequalities in health published before July 2012. Results The literature search resulted in 618 studies after removal of duplicates, of which 60 studies were eligible for analysis. Self-reported measures of health were most frequently used, together with different bonding, bridging and linking components of social capital. A large majority, 56 studies, confirmed a correlation between social capital and socioeconomic inequalities in health. Twelve studies reported that social capital might buffer negative health effects of low socioeconomic status and five studies concluded that social capital has a stronger positive effect on health for people with a lower socioeconomic status. Conclusions There is evidence for both a buffer effect and a dependency effect of social capital on socioeconomic inequalities in health, although the studies that assess these interactions are limited in number. More evidence is needed, as identified hypotheses have implications for community action and for action on the structural causes of social inequalities. PMID:23870068

  3. Lagged Associations of Metropolitan Statistical Area- and State-Level Income Inequality with Cognitive Function: The Health and Retirement Study

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Daniel; Griffin, Beth Ann; Kabeto, Mohammed; Escarce, José; Langa, Kenneth M.; Shih, Regina A.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Much variation in individual-level cognitive function in late life remains unexplained, with little exploration of area-level/contextual factors to date. Income inequality is a contextual factor that may plausibly influence cognitive function. Methods In a nationally-representative cohort of older Americans from the Health and Retirement Study, we examined state- and metropolitan statistical area (MSA)-level income inequality as predictors of individual-level cognitive function measured by the 27-point Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status (TICS-m) scale. We modeled latency periods of 8–20 years, and controlled for state-/metropolitan statistical area (MSA)-level and individual-level factors. Results Higher MSA-level income inequality predicted lower cognitive function 16–18 years later. Using a 16-year lag, living in a MSA in the highest income inequality quartile predicted a 0.9-point lower TICS-m score (β = -0.86; 95% CI = -1.41, -0.31), roughly equivalent to the magnitude associated with five years of aging. We observed no associations for state-level income inequality. The findings were robust to sensitivity analyses using propensity score methods. Conclusions Among older Americans, MSA-level income inequality appears to influence cognitive function nearly two decades later. Policies reducing income inequality levels within cities may help address the growing burden of declining cognitive function among older populations within the United States. PMID:27332986

  4. Socioeconomic Inequality in Smoking in Low-Income and Middle-Income Countries: Results from the World Health Survey

    PubMed Central

    Hosseinpoor, Ahmad Reza; Parker, Lucy Anne; Tursan d'Espaignet, Edouard; Chatterji, Somnath

    2012-01-01

    Objectives To assess the magnitude and pattern of socioeconomic inequality in current smoking in low and middle income countries. Methods We used data from the World Health Survey [WHS] in 48 low-income and middle-income countries to estimate the crude prevalence of current smoking according to household wealth quintile. A Poisson regression model with a robust variance was used to generate the Relative Index of Inequality [RII] according to wealth within each of the countries studied. Results In males, smoking was disproportionately prevalent in the poor in the majority of countries. In numerous countries the poorest men were over 2.5 times more likely to smoke than the richest men. Socioeconomic inequality in women was more varied showing patterns of both pro-rich and pro-poor inequality. In 20 countries pro-rich relative socioeconomic inequality was statistically significant: the poorest women had a higher prevalence of smoking compared to the richest women. Conversely, in 9 countries women in the richest population groups had a statistically significant greater risk of smoking compared to the poorest groups. Conclusion Both the pattern and magnitude of relative inequality may vary greatly between countries. Prevention measures should address the specific pattern of smoking inequality observed within a population. PMID:22952617

  5. Ethnic inequalities in limiting health and self-reported health in later life revisited

    PubMed Central

    Evandrou, Maria; Falkingham, Jane; Feng, Zhixin; Vlachantoni, Athina

    2016-01-01

    Background It is well established that there are ethnic inequalities in health in the UK; however, such inequalities in later life remain a relatively under-researched area. This paper explores ethnic inequalities in health among older people in the UK, controlling for social and economic disadvantages. Methods This paper analyses the first wave (2009–2011) of Understanding Society to examine differentials in the health of older persons aged 60 years and over. 2 health outcomes are explored: the extent to which one's health limits the ability to undertake typical activities and self-rated health. Logistic regression models are used to control for a range of other factors, including income and deprivation. Results After controlling for social and economic disadvantage, black and minority ethnic (BME) elders are still more likely than white British elders to report limiting health and poor self-rated health. The ‘health disadvantage’ appears most marked among BME elders of South Asian origin, with Pakistani elders exhibiting the poorest health outcomes. Length of time resident in the UK does not have a direct impact on health in models for both genders, but is marginally significant for women. Conclusions Older people from ethnic minorities report poorer health outcomes even after controlling for social and economic disadvantages. This result reflects the complexity of health inequalities among different ethnic groups in the UK, and the need to develop health policies which take into account differences in social and economic resources between different ethnic groups. PMID:26787199

  6. Understanding how inequality in the distribution of income affects health.

    PubMed

    Lynch, J W; Kaplan, G A

    1997-07-01

    Research on the determinants of health has almost exclusively focused on the individual but it seems clear we cannot understand or improve patterns of population health without engaging structural determinants at the societal level. This article traces the development of research on income distribution and health to the most recent epidemiologic studies from the USA that show how income inequality is related to age- adjusted mortality within the 50 States. (r = -0.62, p = 0.0001) even after accounting for absolute levels of income. We discuss potential material, psychological, social and behavioral pathways through which income distribution might be linked to health status. Distributional aspects of the economy are important determinants of health and may well provide one of the most pertinent indicators of overall social well-being.

  7. Oral Health Inequalities: Relationships between Environmental and Individual Factors.

    PubMed

    Gupta, E; Robinson, P G; Marya, C M; Baker, S R

    2015-10-01

    Recent research has emphasized the relationships between environmental and individual factors that may influence population oral health and lead to health inequalities. However, little is known about the effect of interactions between environmental and individual factors on inequalities in clinical (e.g., decayed teeth) and subjective oral health outcomes (e.g., oral health-related quality of life [OHQoL]). This cohort study aimed to explore the direct and mediated longitudinal interrelationships between key environmental and individual factors on clinical and subjective oral health outcomes in adults. Self-reported measures of OHQoL and individual (sense of coherence [SOC], social support, stress, oral health beliefs, dental behaviors, and subjective socioeconomic status [SES]) and environmental factors (SES and social network) were collected at baseline and 3-mo follow-up, together with a baseline clinical examination of 495 adult employees of an automobile parts manufacturer in India. Lagged structural equation modeling was guided by the adapted Wilson and Cleary/Brunner and Marmot model linking clinical, individual, and environmental variables to quality of life. The study provides tentative evidence that SES may influence levels of resources such as social support and SOC, which mediate stress and in turn may influence subjective oral health outcomes. Accordingly, the present findings and the adapted Wilson and Cleary/Brunner and Marmot model on which they are predicted provide support for the psychosocial pathway being key in the SES-oral health relationship. The pathways through which environmental factors interact with individual factors to impact subjective oral health outcomes identified here may bring opportunities for more targeted oral health promotion strategies. PMID:26130261

  8. Oral Health Inequalities: Relationships between Environmental and Individual Factors.

    PubMed

    Gupta, E; Robinson, P G; Marya, C M; Baker, S R

    2015-10-01

    Recent research has emphasized the relationships between environmental and individual factors that may influence population oral health and lead to health inequalities. However, little is known about the effect of interactions between environmental and individual factors on inequalities in clinical (e.g., decayed teeth) and subjective oral health outcomes (e.g., oral health-related quality of life [OHQoL]). This cohort study aimed to explore the direct and mediated longitudinal interrelationships between key environmental and individual factors on clinical and subjective oral health outcomes in adults. Self-reported measures of OHQoL and individual (sense of coherence [SOC], social support, stress, oral health beliefs, dental behaviors, and subjective socioeconomic status [SES]) and environmental factors (SES and social network) were collected at baseline and 3-mo follow-up, together with a baseline clinical examination of 495 adult employees of an automobile parts manufacturer in India. Lagged structural equation modeling was guided by the adapted Wilson and Cleary/Brunner and Marmot model linking clinical, individual, and environmental variables to quality of life. The study provides tentative evidence that SES may influence levels of resources such as social support and SOC, which mediate stress and in turn may influence subjective oral health outcomes. Accordingly, the present findings and the adapted Wilson and Cleary/Brunner and Marmot model on which they are predicted provide support for the psychosocial pathway being key in the SES-oral health relationship. The pathways through which environmental factors interact with individual factors to impact subjective oral health outcomes identified here may bring opportunities for more targeted oral health promotion strategies.

  9. Public values, health inequality, and alternative notions of a "fair" response.

    PubMed

    Blacksher, Erika; Rigby, Elizabeth; Espey, Claire

    2010-12-01

    The fact that disadvantaged people generally die younger and suffer more disease than those with more resources is gaining ground as a major policy concern in the United States. Yet we know little about how public values inform public opinion about policy interventions to address these disparities. This article presents findings from an exploratory study of the public's values and priorities as they relate to social inequalities in health. Forty-three subjects were presented with a scenario depicting health inequalities by social class and were given the opportunity to alter the distribution of health outcomes. Participants' responses fell into one of three distributive preferences: (1) prioritize the disadvantaged, (2) equalize health outcomes between advantaged and disadvantaged groups, and (3) equalize health resources between advantaged and disadvantaged groups. These equality preferences were reflected in participants' responses to a second, more complex scenario in which trade-offs with other health-related values - maximizing health and prioritizing the sickest - were introduced. In most cases, participants moderated their distributive preferences to accommodate these other health goals, particularly to prioritize the allocation of resources to the very sick regardless of their socioeconomic status. PMID:21451157

  10. Trends and Inequities in Use of Maternal Health Care Services in Bangladesh, 1991-2011

    PubMed Central

    Anwar, Iqbal; Nababan, Herfina Y.; Mostari, Shabnam; Rahman, Aminur; Khan, Jahangir A. M.

    2015-01-01

    Background and Methods Monitoring use-inequity is important to measure progress in efforts to address health-inequities. Using data from six Bangladesh Demographic and Health Surveys (BDHS), we examine trends, inequities and socio-demographic determinants of use of maternal health care services in Bangladesh between 1991 and 2011. Findings Access to maternal health care services has improved in the last two decades. The adjusted yearly trend was 9.0% (8.6%-9.5%) for any antenatal care (ANC), 11.9% (11.1%-12.7%) for institutional delivery, and 18.9% (17.3%-20.5%) for C-section delivery which is above the WHO recommended rate of 5-15%. Use-inequity was significant for all three indicators but is reducing over time. Between 1991-1994 and 2007-2011 the rich:poor ratio reduced from 3.65 to 1.65 for ANC and from 15.80 to 6.77 for institutional delivery. Between 1995-1998 and 2007-2011, the concentration index reduced from 0.27 (0.25-0.29) to 0.15 (0.14-0.16) for ANC, and from 0.65 (0.60-0.71) to 0.39 (0.37-0.41) for institutional delivery during that period. For use of c-section, the rich:poor ratio reduced from 18.17 to 13.39 and the concentration index from 0.66 (0.57-0.75) to 0.47 (0.45-0.49). In terms of rich:poor differences, there was equity-gain for ANC but not for facility delivery or C-section delivery. All socio-demographic variables were significant predictors of use; of them, maternal education was the most powerful. In addition, the contribution of for-profit private sector is increasingly growing in maternal health. Conclusion Both access and equity are improving in maternal health. We recommend strengthening ongoing health and non-health interventions for the poor. Use-inequity should be monitored using multiple indicators which are incorporated into routine health information systems. Rising C-section rate is alarming and indication of C-sections should be monitored both in private and public sector facilities. PMID:25799500

  11. The effect of income growth and inequality on health inequality: Theory and empirical evidence from the European Panel.

    PubMed

    Van Ourti, Tom; van Doorslaer, Eddy; Koolman, Xander

    2009-05-01

    Governments of EU countries have declared that they would like to couple income growth with reductions in social inequalities in income and health. We show that, theoretically, both aims can be reconciled only under very specific conditions concerning the type of growth and the income responsiveness of health. We investigate whether these conditions were met in Europe in the 1990s using panel data from the European Community Household Panel. We demonstrate that (i) in most countries, the income elasticity of health was positive and increases with income, and (ii) that income growth was not pro-rich in most EU countries, resulting in small or negligible reductions in income inequality. The combination of both findings explains the modest increases we observe in income-related health inequality in the majority of countries.

  12. The impact of primary healthcare in reducing inequalities in child health outcomes, Bogotá – Colombia: an ecological analysis

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Colombia is one of the countries with the widest levels of socioeconomic and health inequalities. Bogotá, its capital, faces serious problems of poverty, social disparities and access to health services. A Primary Health Care (PHC) strategy was implemented in 2004 to improve health care and to address the social determinants of such inequalities. This study aimed to evaluate the contribution of the PHC strategy to reducing inequalities in child health outcomes in Bogotá. Methods An ecological analysis with localities as the unit of analysis was carried out. The variable used to capture the socioeconomic status and living standards was the Quality of Life Index (QLI). Concentration curves and concentration indices for four child health outcomes (infant mortality rate (IMR), under-5 mortality rate, prevalence of acute malnutrition in children under-5, and vaccination coverage for diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus) were calculated to measure socioeconomic inequality. Two periods were used to describe possible changes in the magnitude of the inequalities related with the PHC implementation (2003 year before - 2007 year after implementation). The contribution of the PHC intervention was computed by a decomposition analysis carried out on data from 2007. Results In both 2003 and 2007, concentration curves and indexes of IMR, under-5 mortality rate and acute malnutrition showed inequalities to the disadvantage of localities with lower QLI. Diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus (DPT) vaccinations were more prevalent among localities with higher QLI in 2003 but were higher in localities with lower QLI in 2007. The variation of the concentration index between 2003 and 2007 indicated reductions in inequality for all of the indicators in the period after the PHC implementation. In 2007, PHC was associated with a reduction in the effect of the inequality that affected disadvantaged localities in under-5 mortality (24%), IMR (19%) and acute malnutrition (7%). PHC also

  13. [Wawared Peru: reducing health inequities and improving maternal health by improving information systems in health].

    PubMed

    Pérez-Lu, José E; Iguiñiz Romero, Ruth; Bayer, Angela M; García, Patricia J

    2015-01-01

    In developing countries, there are no high quality data to support decision-making and governance due to inadequate information collection and transmission processes. Our project WawaRed-Peru: "Reducing health inequities and improving maternal health by improving health information systems" aims to improve maternal health processes and indicators through the implementation of interoperability standards for maternal health information systems in order for decision makers to have timely, high quality information. Through this project, we hope to support the development of better health policies and to also contribute to reducing problems of health equity among Peruvian women and potentially women in other developing countries. The aim of this article is to present the current state of information systems for maternal health in Peru. PMID:26338401

  14. Addressing the social determinants of health through health system strengthening and inter-sectoral convergence: the case of the Indian National Rural Health Mission

    PubMed Central

    Prasad, Amit Mohan; Chakraborty, Gautam; Yadav, Sajjan Singh; Bhatia, Salima

    2013-01-01

    Background At the turn of the 21st century, India was plagued by significant rural–urban, inter-state and inter-district inequities in health. For example, in 2004, the infant mortality rate (IMR) was 24 points higher in rural areas compared to urban areas. To address these inequities, to strengthen the rural health system (a major determinant of health in itself) and to facilitate action on other determinants of health, India launched the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) in April 2005. Methods Under the NRHM, Rs. 666 billion (US$12.1 billion) was invested in rural areas from April 2005 to March 2012. There was also a substantially higher allocation for 18 high-focus states and 264 high-focus districts, identified on the basis of poor health and demographic indicators. Other determinants of health, especially nutrition and decentralized action, were addressed through mechanisms like State/District Health Missions, Village Health, Sanitation and Nutrition Committees, and Village Health and Nutrition Days. Results Consequently, in bigger high-focus states, rural IMR fell by 15.6 points between 2004 and 2011, as compared to 9 points in urban areas. Similarly, the maternal mortality rate in high-focus states declined by 17.9% between 2004–2006 and 2007–2009 compared to 14.6% in other states. Conclusion The article, on the basis of the above approaches employed under NRHM, proposes the NRHM model to ‘reduce health inequities and initiate action on SDH’. PMID:23458089

  15. Primary care, income inequality, and self-rated health in the United States: a mixed-level analysis.

    PubMed

    Shi, L; Starfield, B

    2000-01-01

    Using the 1996 Community Tracking Study household survey, the authors examined whether income inequality and primary care, measured at the state level, predict individual morbidity as measured by self-rated health status, while adjusting for potentially confounding individual variables. Their results indicate that distributions of income and primary care within states are significantly associated with individuals' self-rated health; that there is a gradient effect of income inequality on self-rated health; and that individuals living in states with a higher ratio of primary care physician to population are more likely to report good health than those living in states with a lower such ratio. From a policy perspective, improvement in individuals' health is likely to require a multi-pronged approach that addresses individual socioeconomic determinants of health, social and economic policies that affect income distribution, and a strengthening of the primary care aspects of health services.

  16. The contribution of smoking and obesity to income-related inequalities in health in England.

    PubMed

    Vallejo-Torres, Laura; Morris, Stephen

    2010-09-01

    Reducing avoidable inequalities in health is a priority in many health care systems, including the NHS in Great Britain. Evidence suggests that lifestyle factors may play a role in explaining socioeconomic inequalities in health. In this paper we measure the contribution of smoking and obesity to income-related inequality in health. We use the corrected concentration index to measure inequality across time and areas of England, and decomposition methods to quantify directly the contribution of smoking and obesity to income-related inequality. Instrumental variables regression is used to test the endogeneity of smoking and obesity. We use data from nine rounds of the Health Survey for England (1998-2006). The results show that there are significant income-related health inequalities in England, that the extent of the inequality varies by area, and that in some areas it has increased over time. Nationally, smoking and obesity make a significant but modest contribution to income-related inequality in health (2.3% and 1.2%, respectively). Despite the reduction in smoking prevalence, the contribution of smoking has slightly increased over time, due to its increasing concentration among the poor and its negative effect on health. While the prevalence of obesity is increasing, it is more equally distributed across society. The prevalence of these problems varies between areas, and so does the contribution they make to income-related inequalities in health.

  17. Income inequality, social cohesion and the health status of populations: the role of neo-liberalism.

    PubMed

    Coburn, D

    2000-07-01

    There has been a recent upsurge of interest in the relationship between income inequality and health within nations and between nations. On the latter topic Wilkinson and others believe that, in the advanced capitalist countries, higher income inequality leads to lowered social cohesion which in turn produces poorer health status. I argue that, despite a by-now voluminous literature, not enough attention has been paid to the social context of income inequality--health relationships or to the causes of income inequality itself. In this paper I contend that there is a particular affinity between neo-liberal (market-oriented) political doctrines, income inequality and lowered social cohesion. Neo-liberalism, it is argued, produces both higher income inequality and lowered social cohesion. Part of the negative effect of neo-liberalism on health status is due to its undermining of the welfare state. The welfare state may have direct effects on health as well as being one of the underlying structural causes of social cohesion. The rise of neo-liberalism and the decline of the welfare state are themselves tied to globalization and the changing class structures of the advanced capitalist societies. More attention should be paid to understanding the causes of income inequalities and not just to its effects because income inequalities are neither necessary nor inevitable. Moreover, understanding the contextual causes of inequality may also influence our notion of the causal pathways involved in inequality-health status relationships (and vice versa). PMID:10817476

  18. Income inequality, social cohesion and the health status of populations: the role of neo-liberalism.

    PubMed

    Coburn, D

    2000-07-01

    There has been a recent upsurge of interest in the relationship between income inequality and health within nations and between nations. On the latter topic Wilkinson and others believe that, in the advanced capitalist countries, higher income inequality leads to lowered social cohesion which in turn produces poorer health status. I argue that, despite a by-now voluminous literature, not enough attention has been paid to the social context of income inequality--health relationships or to the causes of income inequality itself. In this paper I contend that there is a particular affinity between neo-liberal (market-oriented) political doctrines, income inequality and lowered social cohesion. Neo-liberalism, it is argued, produces both higher income inequality and lowered social cohesion. Part of the negative effect of neo-liberalism on health status is due to its undermining of the welfare state. The welfare state may have direct effects on health as well as being one of the underlying structural causes of social cohesion. The rise of neo-liberalism and the decline of the welfare state are themselves tied to globalization and the changing class structures of the advanced capitalist societies. More attention should be paid to understanding the causes of income inequalities and not just to its effects because income inequalities are neither necessary nor inevitable. Moreover, understanding the contextual causes of inequality may also influence our notion of the causal pathways involved in inequality-health status relationships (and vice versa).

  19. Are community midwives addressing the inequities in access to skilled birth attendance in Punjab, Pakistan? Gender, class and social exclusion

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Pakistan is one of the six countries estimated to contribute to over half of all maternal deaths worldwide. To address its high maternal mortality rate, in particular the inequities in access to maternal health care services, the government of Pakistan created a new cadre of community-based midwives (CMW). A key expectation is that the CMWs will improve access to skilled antenatal and intra-partum care for the poor and disadvantaged women. A critical gap in our knowledge is whether this cadre of workers, operating in the private health care context, will meet the expectation to provide care to the poorest and most marginalized women. There is an inherent paradox between the notions of fee-for-service and increasing access to health care for the poorest who, by definition, are unable to pay. Methods/Design Data will be collected in three interlinked modules. Module 1 will consist of a population-based survey in the catchment areas of the CMW’s in districts Jhelum and Layyah in Punjab. Proportions of socially excluded women who are served by CMWs and their satisfaction levels with their maternity care provider will be assessed. Module 2 will explore, using an institutional ethnographic approach, the challenges (organizational, social, financial) that CMWs face in providing care to the poor and socially marginalized women. Module 3 will identify the social, financial, geographical and other barriers to uncover the hidden forces and power relations that shape the choices and opportunities of poor and marginalized women in accessing CMW services. An extensive knowledge dissemination plan will facilitate uptake of research findings to inform positive developments in maternal health policy, service design and care delivery in Pakistan. Discussion The findings of this study will enhance understanding of the power dynamics of gender and class that may underlie poor women’s marginalization from health care systems, including community midwifery care. One key

  20. Using a Transdisciplinary Model to Address Inequities in Field Placements for Teacher Candidates with Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bargerhuff, Mary Ellen; Cole, Donna J.; Teeters, Laura

    2012-01-01

    This paper examines the contradiction between articulated university policy on diversity/inclusion and actual practice with regard to field placements for teacher candidates with disabilities. Analysis of a unique case study involving a teacher candidate with traumatic brain injury illustrates the inequities of the traditional concern conference…

  1. Engaging sub-national governments in addressing health equities: challenges and opportunities in China's health system reform.

    PubMed

    Brixi, Hana; Mu, Yan; Targa, Beatrice; Hipgrave, David

    2013-12-01

    China's current health system reform (HSR) is striving to resolve deep inequities in health outcomes. Achieving this goal is difficult not only because of continuously increasing income disparities in China but also because of weaknesses in healthcare financing and delivery at the local level. We explore to what extent sub-national governments, which are largely responsible for health financing in China, are addressing health inequities. We describe the recent trend in health inequalities in China, and analyse government expenditure on health in the context of China's decentralization and intergovernmental model to assess whether national, provincial and sub-provincial public resource allocations and local government accountability relationships are aligned with this goal. Our analysis reveals that government expenditure on health at sub-national levels, which accounts for ∼90% of total government expenditure on health, is increasingly regressive across provinces, and across prefectures within provinces. Increasing inequity in public expenditure at sub-national levels indicates that resources and responsibilities at sub-national levels in China are not well aligned with national priorities. China's HSR would benefit from complementary measures to improve the governance and financing of public service delivery. We discuss the existing weaknesses in local governance and suggest possible approaches to better align the responsibilities and capacity of sub-national governments with national policies, standards, laws and regulations, therefore ensuring local-level implementation and enforcement. Drawing on China's institutional framework and ongoing reform pilots, we present possible approaches to: (1) consolidate key health financing responsibilities at the provincial level and strengthen the accountability of provincial governments, (2) define targets for expenditure on primary health care, outputs and outcomes for each province and (3) use independent sources to

  2. [Indices based on entropy for measuring social inequalities in health].

    PubMed

    Bacallao, Jorge; Castillo-Salgado, Carlos; Schneider, Maria Cristina; Mujica, Oscar J; Loyola, Enrique; Vidaurre, Manuel

    2002-12-01

    As described in the scientific literature, indices used to measure social inequalities in health have positive features, but they also have shortcomings, depending on how they are applied. The objective of this article is to put forward and to demonstrate, in both theoretical and practical terms, the advantages of measurements of inequality based on the notion of entropy, which is well known in physics and in information theory. The article defines and presents the main properties of indices based on the notions of entropy and redundancy. The application of the indices is illustrated with two fictitious data sets and also with real data derived from basic health indicators for the Americas, from the Pan American Health Organization. Indices based on the notion of entropy have properties that include: a) not varying with scale changes, b) being symmetrical, c) incorporating a socioeconomic dimension, and d) being easy to interpret thanks to the condition of equivalence between entropy and a system with two categories. PMID:12690729

  3. Health care inequities in north India: Role of public sector in universalizing health care

    PubMed Central

    Prinja, Shankar; Kanavos, Panos; Kumar, Rajesh

    2012-01-01

    Background & objectives: Income inequality is associated with poor health. Inequities exist in service utilization and financing for health care. Health care costs push high number of households into poverty in India. We undertook this study to ascertain inequities in health status, service utilization and out-of-pocket (OOP) health expenditures in two States in north India namely, Haryana and Punjab, and Union Territory of Chandigarh. Methods: Data from National Sample Survey 60th Round on Morbidity and Health Care were analyzed by mean consumption expenditure quintiles. Indicators were devised to document inequities in the dimensions of horizontal and vertical inequity; and redistribution of public subsidy. Concentration index (CI), and equity ratio in conjunction with concentration curve were computed to measure inequity. Results: Reporting of morbidity and hospitalization rate had a pro-rich distribution in all three States indicating poor utilization of health services by low income households. Nearly 57 and 60 per cent households from poorest income quintile in Haryana and Punjab, respectively faced catastrophic OOP hospitalization expenditure at 10 per cent threshold. Lower prevalence of catastrophic expenditure was recorded in higher income groups. Public sector also incurred high costs for hospitalization in selected three States. Medicines constituted 19 to 47 per cent of hospitalization expenditure and 59 to 86 per cent OPD expenditure borne OOP by households in public sector. Public sector hospitalizations had a pro-poor distribution in Haryana, Punjab and Chandigarh. Interpretation & conclusions: Our analysis indicates that public sector health service utilization needs to be improved. OOP health care expenditures at public sector institutions should to be curtailed to improve utilization of poorer segments of population. Greater availability of medicines in public sector and regulation of their prices provide a unique opportunity to reduce public

  4. Designing a Community-Based Lay Health Advisor Training Curriculum to Address Cancer Health Disparities

    PubMed Central

    Gwede, Clement K.; Ashley, Atalie A.; McGinnis, Kara; Montiel-Ishino, F. Alejandro; Standifer, Maisha; Baldwin, Julie; Williams, Coni; Sneed, Kevin B.; Wathington, Deanna; Dash-Pitts, Lolita; Green, B. Lee

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Racial and ethnic minorities have disproportionately higher cancer incidence and mortality than their White counterparts. In response to this inequity in cancer prevention and care, community-based lay health advisors (LHAs) may be suited to deliver effective, culturally relevant, quality cancer education, prevention/screening, and early detection services for underserved populations. Approach and Strategies Consistent with key tenets of community-based participatory research (CBPR), this project engaged community partners to develop and implement a unique LHA training curriculum to address cancer health disparities among medically underserved communities in a tricounty area. Seven phases of curriculum development went into designing a final seven-module LHA curriculum. In keeping with principles of CBPR and community engagement, academic–community partners and LHAs themselves were involved at all phases to ensure the needs of academic and community partners were mutually addressed in development and implementation of the LHA program. Discussion and Conclusions Community-based LHA programs for outreach, education, and promotion of cancer screening and early detection, are ideal for addressing cancer health disparities in access and quality care. When community-based LHAs are appropriately recruited, trained, and located in communities, they provide unique opportunities to link, bridge, and facilitate quality cancer education, services, and research. PMID:22982709

  5. Difference in health inequity between two population groups due to a social determinant of health.

    PubMed

    Moonesinghe, Ramal; Bouye, Karen; Penman-Aguilar, Ana

    2014-12-01

    The World Health Organization defines social determinants of health as“complex, integrated, and overlapping social structures and economic systems” that are responsible for most health inequities. Similar to the individual-level risk factors such as behavioral and biological risk factors that influence disease, we consider social determinants of health such as the distribution of income, wealth, influence and power as risk factors for risk of disease. We operationally define health inequity in a disease within a population due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable as the difference between the disease outcome with and without the risk factor in the population. We derive expressions for difference in health inequity between two populations due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable for a given disease. The difference in heath inequity between two population groups due to a risk factor increases with increasing difference in relative risks and the difference in prevalence of the risk factor in the two populations. The difference in healthinequity could be larger than the difference in health outcomes between the two populations in some situations. Compared to health disparities which are typically measured and monitored using absolute or relative disparities of health outcomes, the methods presented in this manuscript provide a different, yet complementary, picture because they parse out the contributions of unfair and avoidable risk factors. PMID:25590095

  6. Difference in health inequity between two population groups due to a social determinant of health.

    PubMed

    Moonesinghe, Ramal; Bouye, Karen; Penman-Aguilar, Ana

    2014-12-01

    The World Health Organization defines social determinants of health as“complex, integrated, and overlapping social structures and economic systems” that are responsible for most health inequities. Similar to the individual-level risk factors such as behavioral and biological risk factors that influence disease, we consider social determinants of health such as the distribution of income, wealth, influence and power as risk factors for risk of disease. We operationally define health inequity in a disease within a population due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable as the difference between the disease outcome with and without the risk factor in the population. We derive expressions for difference in health inequity between two populations due to a risk factor that is unfair and avoidable for a given disease. The difference in heath inequity between two population groups due to a risk factor increases with increasing difference in relative risks and the difference in prevalence of the risk factor in the two populations. The difference in healthinequity could be larger than the difference in health outcomes between the two populations in some situations. Compared to health disparities which are typically measured and monitored using absolute or relative disparities of health outcomes, the methods presented in this manuscript provide a different, yet complementary, picture because they parse out the contributions of unfair and avoidable risk factors.

  7. International cooperation to conquer global inequities in reproductive health.

    PubMed

    1992-01-01

    The effect of population growth is not limited to national boundaries. Indeed the inability of people in developing countries to control their own fertility has repercussions on global security and on the balance between population and environment as well a on their health and welfare. All nations need to take steps to slow down rapid population growth now, otherwise we will suffer serious consequences. The different between 2 UN projections of world population equals current world population size. Almost 90% of the increase of the larger projection would occur in developing countries, yet they are the least capable of managing big populations. Further major inequalities in reproductive health between developed and developing countries, as well as between men and women exist. The infant mortality rate in developed regions is around 6 times lower than it is in developing regions, child mortality is 7 times lower, and maternal mortality is 15 times lower. International collaboration to rid the world of these inequalities is need to improve reproductive health. Specifically, political and health leaders should mobilize necessary international and national resources. Even though there is more than US $50,000 million in official development assistance funds available annually, the level of population related funding has decreased to less than 1.1% of these funds for 1993-1994. Developed countries could reduce the debt burden to free funds for population activities and to reverse the flow from the poor countries in the Southern Hemisphere to the rich countries in the Northern Hemisphere. Besides developing countries spend much of their money on the military (e.g. sub-Saharan Africa spends US$ 10,000 million). International cooperation leading to peace would make significantly more money available for the social and health sectors, especially reproductive health care. PMID:12344678

  8. The role of urban municipal governments in reducing health inequities: A meta-narrative mapping analysis

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The 1986 Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion coincided with a preponderance of research, worldwide, on the social determinants of health and health inequities. Despite the establishment of a 'health inequities knowledge base', the precise roles for municipal governments in reducing health inequities at the local level remain poorly defined. The objective of this study was to monitor thematic trends in this knowledge base over time, and to track scholarly prescriptions for municipal government intervention on local health inequities. Methods Using meta-narrative mapping, four bodies of scholarly literature - 'health promotion', 'Healthy Cities', 'population health' and 'urban health' - that have made substantial contributions to the health inequities knowledge base were analyzed over the 1986-2006 timeframe. Article abstracts were retrieved from the four literature bodies using three electronic databases (PubMed, Sociological Abstracts, Web of Science), and coded for bibliographic characteristics, article themes and determinants of health profiles, and prescriptions for municipal government interventions on health inequities. Results 1004 journal abstracts pertaining to health inequities were analyzed. The overall quantity of abstracts increased considerably over the 20 year timeframe, and emerged primarily from the 'health promotion' and 'population health' literatures. 'Healthy lifestyles' and 'healthcare' were the most commonly emphasized themes in the abstracts. Only 17% of the abstracts articulated prescriptions for municipal government interventions on local health inequities. Such interventions included public health campaigns, partnering with other governments and non-governmental organizations for health interventions, and delivering effectively on existing responsibilities to improve health outcomes and reduce inequities. Abstracts originating from Europe, and from the 'Healthy Cities' and 'urban health' literatures, were most vocal regarding

  9. [Is it possible to reduce health inequalities in old age?].

    PubMed

    Michel, Jean-Pierre; Herrmann, François; Zekry, Dina

    2012-01-01

    Analysis of prospective data collected between 1984 and 2008 by the CERN medical team (European Centre of Nuclear Research, Geneva) concerning 2040 former employees who were retired or had died stimulated our interest on the impact of inequalities in socioeconomic conditions, employment, lifestyle and classical risk factors on health and life expectancy. Such inequalities explain differences in life expectancy, potentially reaching several decades, between rich and poor countries (France vs Swaziland), but also within a given country (USA), a given city (Glasgow) or even a given enterprise (CERN) where all employees have the same level of healthcare insurance and access to treatment. Classical cardiovascular and neurovascular risk factors (smoking, arterial hypertension and lipid disorders) interact with socioeconomic status, intelligence, education, emotions and job responsibility/complexity, precipitating or preventing cardiovascular events. The same is true of dementia, for which midlife risk factors (obesity, arterial hypertension and hypercholesterolemia) should be considered in the psychosocioeconomic context, which influences cognitive reserves and thus affects the risk and severity of dementia in old age. Thus, in addition to lifestyle and classical risk factors, socioeconomic status appears as a major health determinant, by imposing behaviors and habits and by determining access to healthcare. PMID:23259343

  10. Kalman Filtering with Inequality Constraints for Turbofan Engine Health Estimation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simon, Dan; Simon, Donald L.

    2003-01-01

    Kalman filters are often used to estimate the state variables of a dynamic system. However, in the application of Kalman filters some known signal information is often either ignored or dealt with heuristically. For instance, state variable constraints (which may be based on physical considerations) are often neglected because they do not fit easily into the structure of the Kalman filter. This paper develops two analytic methods of incorporating state variable inequality constraints in the Kalman filter. The first method is a general technique of using hard constraints to enforce inequalities on the state variable estimates. The resultant filter is a combination of a standard Kalman filter and a quadratic programming problem. The second method uses soft constraints to estimate state variables that are known to vary slowly with time. (Soft constraints are constraints that are required to be approximately satisfied rather than exactly satisfied.) The incorporation of state variable constraints increases the computational effort of the filter but significantly improves its estimation accuracy. The improvement is proven theoretically and shown via simulation results. The use of the algorithm is demonstrated on a linearized simulation of a turbofan engine to estimate health parameters. The turbofan engine model contains 16 state variables, 12 measurements, and 8 component health parameters. It is shown that the new algorithms provide improved performance in this example over unconstrained Kalman filtering.

  11. Social capital and health (plus wealth, income inequality and regional health governance).

    PubMed

    Veenstra, Gerry

    2002-03-01

    This article describes an empirical exploration of relationships among aspects of thirty health districts in Saskatchewan, Canada. These aspects include social capital, income inequality, wealth, governance by regional health authorities and population health, the primary dependent variable. The social capital index incorporated associational and civic participation, average and median household incomes served as proxies for wealth, the degree of skew in the distribution of household incomes assessed income inequality while the model for effective governance by District Health Boards (DHBs) focused on reflection of health needs, policy making and implementation, fiscal responsibility and the integration and co-ordination of services. I found no evidence of a relationship between social capital in health districts and the performance of DHBs. Among the determinants of health, wealth appeared unrelated to age-standardised mortality rates while income inequality was positively and social capital was negatively related to mortality. Income inequality was not as strongly related to age-standardised mortality after controlling for social capital. and vice versa, suggesting the two may be comingled somehow when it comes to population health, although they were not significantly related to one another. Of the predictors of social capital the distribution of age in districts appeared to be the most salient; of the predictors of age-standardised mortality rates the gender composition of a district was most salient.

  12. Equality for all? White Americans' willingness to address inequality with Asian and African Americans.

    PubMed

    Bikmen, Nida; Durkin, Kristine

    2014-10-01

    White Americans' willingness to engage in dialogues about intergroup commonalities and power inequalities with Asian and African Americans were examined in two experiments. Because Whites perceive that African Americans experience greater discrimination than do Asian Americans, we predicted that they would be more willing to engage in dialogues that would interrogate injustice and inequality with them. We also explored the role of common in-group identity (as Americans) on willingness for dialogue about inequality. In both studies, Whites were less interested in engaging in power talk with Asian Americans than with African Americans, but the difference in willingness for commonality talk was smaller. Asian Americans were perceived as experiencing lower levels of discrimination (Studies 1 and 2) and identify less with America (Study 2) both of which predicted lower willingness for power talk with them. Common in-group identity manipulations had marginal effects on willingness for power talk with African Americans and no effect on power talk with Asian Americans. Implications for improving social disparities between various groups were discussed.

  13. Equality for all? White Americans' willingness to address inequality with Asian and African Americans.

    PubMed

    Bikmen, Nida; Durkin, Kristine

    2014-10-01

    White Americans' willingness to engage in dialogues about intergroup commonalities and power inequalities with Asian and African Americans were examined in two experiments. Because Whites perceive that African Americans experience greater discrimination than do Asian Americans, we predicted that they would be more willing to engage in dialogues that would interrogate injustice and inequality with them. We also explored the role of common in-group identity (as Americans) on willingness for dialogue about inequality. In both studies, Whites were less interested in engaging in power talk with Asian Americans than with African Americans, but the difference in willingness for commonality talk was smaller. Asian Americans were perceived as experiencing lower levels of discrimination (Studies 1 and 2) and identify less with America (Study 2) both of which predicted lower willingness for power talk with them. Common in-group identity manipulations had marginal effects on willingness for power talk with African Americans and no effect on power talk with Asian Americans. Implications for improving social disparities between various groups were discussed. PMID:24749499

  14. Can we monitor socioeconomic inequalities in health? A survey of U.S. health departments' data collection and reporting practices.

    PubMed Central

    Krieger, N; Chen, J T; Ebel, G

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the potential for and obstacles to routine monitoring of socioeconomic inequalities in health using U.S. vital statistics and disease registry data, the authors surveyed current data collection and reporting practices for specific socioeconomic variables. METHODS: In 1996 the authors mailed a self-administered survey to all of the 55 health department vital statistics offices reporting data to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) to determine what kinds of socioeconomic data they collected on birth and death certificates and in cancer, AIDS, and tuberculosis (TB) registries and what kinds of socioeconomic data were routinely reported in health department publications. RESULTS: Health departments routinely obtained data on occupation on death certificates and in most cancer registries. They collected data on educational level for both birth and death certificates. None of the databases collected information on income, and few obtained data on employment status, health insurance carrier, or receipt of public assistance. When socioeconomic data were collected, they were usually not included in published reports (except for mothers educational level in birth certificate data). Obstacles cited to collecting and reporting socioeconomic data included lack of resources and concerns about the confidentiality and accuracy of data. All databases, however, included residential addresses, suggesting records could be geocoded and linked to Census-based socioeconomic data. CONCLUSIONS: U.S. state and Federal vital statistics and disease registries should routinely collect and publish socioeconomic data to improve efforts to monitor trends in and reduce social inequalities in health. PMID:10822475

  15. Trend of Income-related Inequality of Child Oral Health in Australia

    PubMed Central

    Do, L.G.; Spencer, A.J.; Slade, G.D.; Ha, D.H.; Roberts-Thomson, K.F.; Liu, P.

    2010-01-01

    It is important that we monitor socio-economic inequality in health. Inequality in child oral health has been expected to widen because of widening socio-economic inequality. This study aimed to evaluate trends in income-related inequality in caries experience of Australian children. Cross-sectional studies in 1992/93 and 2002/03 collected data on deciduous caries experience of 5- to 10-year-olds and permanent caries experience of 6- to 12-year-olds. Household composition and income was used to calculate quartiles of equivalized income. Slope Index of Inequality (SII), Concentration Index (CI), and regression-based rate ratios were used to quantify income-related inequality and to evaluate trends. Income-related inequality in caries experience was evident regardless of time and dentition. The three indicators of inequality indicate a significant increase in income-related inequality in child deciduous caries experience during the decade. The income inequality in permanent caries experience did not change significantly. Income inequalities increased in deciduous teeth, but not in permanent teeth, among Australian children. PMID:20543094

  16. Trend of income-related inequality of child oral health in Australia.

    PubMed

    Do, L G; Spencer, A J; Slade, G D; Ha, D H; Roberts-Thomson, K F; Liu, P

    2010-09-01

    It is important that we monitor socio-economic inequality in health. Inequality in child oral health has been expected to widen because of widening socio-economic inequality. This study aimed to evaluate trends in income-related inequality in caries experience of Australian children. Cross-sectional studies in 1992/93 and 2002/03 collected data on deciduous caries experience of 5- to 10-year-olds and permanent caries experience of 6- to 12-year-olds. Household composition and income was used to calculate quartiles of equivalized income. Slope Index of Inequality (SII), Concentration Index (CI), and regression-based rate ratios were used to quantify income-related inequality and to evaluate trends. Income-related inequality in caries experience was evident regardless of time and dentition. The three indicators of inequality indicate a significant increase in income-related inequality in child deciduous caries experience during the decade. The income inequality in permanent caries experience did not change significantly. Income inequalities increased in deciduous teeth, but not in permanent teeth, among Australian children.

  17. Provincial income inequality and self‐reported health status in China during 1991–7

    PubMed Central

    Pei, X; Rodriguez, E

    2006-01-01

    Background The relationship between income inequality and health has been widely explored. Today there is some evidence suggesting that good health is inversely related to income inequality. After the economic reforms initiated in the early 1980s, China experienced one of the fastest‐growing income inequalities in the world. The state of China in the 1990s is focussed on and possible effects of provincial income inequality on individual health status are explored. Methods A multilevel regression model is used to analyse the data collected in 1991, 1993 and 1997 from nine provinces included in the China Health and Nutrition Survey. The effects of provincial Gini coefficients on self‐rated health in each year are evaluated by two logistic regressions estimating the odds ratios of reporting poor or fair health. The patterns of this effect are compared among the survey years and also among different demographic groups. Results The analyses show an independent effect of income inequality on self‐reported health after adjusting for individual and household variables. Furthermore, the effect of income distribution is not attenuated when household income and provincial gross domestic product per capita are included in the model. The results show that there is an increased risk of about 10–15% on average for fair or poor health for people living in provinces with greater income inequalities compared with provinces with modest income inequalities. Conclusions In China, societal income inequality appears to be an important determinant of population health during 1991–7. PMID:17108303

  18. Measuring total health inequality: adding individual variation to group-level differences.

    PubMed

    Gakidou, Emmanuela; King, Gary

    2002-08-12

    BACKGROUND: Studies have revealed large variations in average health status across social, economic, and other groups. No study exists on the distribution of the risk of ill-health across individuals, either within groups or across all people in a society, and as such a crucial piece of total health inequality has been overlooked. Some of the reason for this neglect has been that the risk of death, which forms the basis for most measures, is impossible to observe directly and difficult to estimate. METHODS: We develop a measure of total health inequality - encompassing all inequalities among people in a society, including variation between and within groups - by adapting a beta-binomial regression model. We apply it to children under age two in 50 low- and middle-income countries. Our method has been adopted by the World Health Organization and is being implemented in surveys around the world; preliminary estimates have appeared in the World Health Report (2000). RESULTS: Countries with similar average child mortality differ considerably in total health inequality. Liberia and Mozambique have the largest inequalities in child survival, while Colombia, the Philippines and Kazakhstan have the lowest levels among the countries measured. CONCLUSIONS: Total health inequality estimates should be routinely reported alongside average levels of health in populations and groups, as they reveal important policy-related information not otherwise knowable. This approach enables meaningful comparisons of inequality across countries and future analyses of the determinants of inequality.

  19. Six employment conditions and health inequalities: a descriptive overview.

    PubMed

    Benach, Joan; Solar, Orielle; Vergara, Montserrat; Vanroelen, Christophe; Santana, Vilma; Castedo, Antía; Ramos, Javier; Muntaner, Carles

    2010-01-01

    Standard full-time permanent employment-providing a minimal degree of stability, income sustainability, workers' empowerment, and social protection-has declined in the high-income countries, while it was never the norm in the rest of the world. Consequently, work is increasingly affecting population health and health inequalities, not only as a consequence of harmful working conditions, but also because of employment conditions. Nevertheless, the health consequences of employment conditions are largely neglected in research. The authors describe five types of employment conditions that deviate from standard full-time permanent employment--precarious employment, unemployment, informal employment, forced employment or slavery, and child labor--and their health consequences, from a worldwide perspective. Despite obvious problems of measurement and international comparability, the findings show that, certainly in the low-income countries, these conditions are largely situated in informality, denying any possible standard of safety, protection, sustainability, and workers' rights. Considerable numbers of the world's working people are affected in geographically and socioeconomically unequal ways. This clearly relates nonstandard employment conditions to health equity consequences. In the future, governments and health agencies should establish more adequate surveillance systems, research programs, and policy awareness regarding the health effects of these nonstandard employment conditions. PMID:20440970

  20. [The other inequities in health care: A challenge for bioethics].

    PubMed

    Bórquez Polloni, B

    2014-01-01

    Contrary to what one may think health and equity are not issues that have always gone hand in hand following the formal recognition of the former by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948). It was not until the Alma Ata Declaration in 1978 when the close ties between both began to be seriously considered, and in 2000 this led to several international organizations formalizing their concern for the factors that determine whether a health system is fair or not. Since then, the term «equity in health» has taken on a special meaning when weighing up the strength or weaknesses of certain health systems. However, over the years, equity in health has gradually been identified almost exclusively with a financial issue that focuses on distributing health resources. As a result, one often forgets to provide the necessary care for those in other unfair situations, which, as regards access to and providing health care, leads to unfair situations that are not directly related to financial reasons and do not require investments, but consensus and the honest determination to make changes. This leads the Bioethics of the 21st century to face two challenges: to warn of these inequities and to promote initiatives that are able to make effective changes.

  1. Social class inequalities in health among occupational cohorts from Finland, Britain and Japan: a follow up study.

    PubMed

    Lahelma, Eero; Pietiläinen, Olli; Rahkonen, Ossi; Kivimäki, Mika; Martikainen, Pekka; Ferrie, Jane; Marmot, Michael; Shipley, Martin; Sekine, Michikazu; Tatsuse, Takashi; Lallukka, Tea

    2015-01-01

    We examined whether relative occupational social class inequalities in physical health functioning widen, narrow or remain stable among white collar employees from three affluent countries. Health functioning was assessed twice in occupational cohorts from Britain (1997-1999 and 2003-2004), Finland (2000-2002 and 2007) and Japan (1998-1999 and 2003). Widening inequalities were seen for British and Finnish men, whereas inequalities among British and Finnish women remained relatively stable. Japanese women showed reverse inequalities at follow up, but no health inequalities were seen among Japanese men. Health behaviours and social relations explained 4-37% of the magnitude in health inequalities, but not their widening. PMID:25545770

  2. Income inequality, perceived happiness, and self-rated health: evidence from nationwide surveys in Japan.

    PubMed

    Oshio, Takashi; Kobayashi, Miki

    2010-05-01

    In this study, we examined how regional inequality is associated with perceived happiness and self-rated health at an individual level by using micro-data from nationwide surveys in Japan. We estimated the bivariate ordered probit models to explore the associations between regional inequality and two subjective outcomes, and evaluated effect modification to their sensitivities to regional inequality using the categories of key individual attributes. We found that individuals who live in areas of high inequality tend to report themselves as both unhappy and unhealthy, even after controlling for various individual and regional characteristics and taking into account the correlation between the two subjective outcomes. Gender, age, educational attainment, income, occupational status, and political views modify the associations of regional inequality with the subjective assessments of happiness and health. Notably, those with an unstable occupational status are most affected by inequality when assessing both perceived happiness and health.

  3. Social and health policies or interventions to tackle health inequalities in European cities: a scoping review

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Health inequalities can be tackled with appropriate health and social policies, involving all community groups and governments, from local to global. The objective of this study was to carry out a scoping review on social and health policies or interventions to tackle health inequalities in European cities published in scientific journals. Methods Scoping review. The search was done in “PubMed” and the “Sociological Abstracts” database and was limited to articles published between 1995 and 2011. The inclusion criteria were: interventions had to take place in European cities and they had to state the reduction of health inequalities among their objectives. Results A total of 54 papers were included, of which 35.2% used an experimental design, and 74.1% were carried out in the United Kingdom. The whole city was the setting in 27.8% of them and 44.4% were based on promoting healthy behaviours. Adults and children were the most frequent target population and half of the interventions had a universal approach and the other half a selective one. Half of the interventions were evaluated and showed positive results. Conclusions Although health behaviours are not the main determinants of health inequalities, the majority of the selected documents were based on evaluations of interventions focusing on them. PMID:24564851

  4. Health innovation networks to help developing countries address neglected diseases.

    PubMed

    Morel, Carlos M; Acharya, Tara; Broun, Denis; Dangi, Ajit; Elias, Christopher; Ganguly, N K; Gardner, Charles A; Gupta, R K; Haycock, Jane; Heher, Anthony D; Hotez, Peter J; Kettler, Hannah E; Keusch, Gerald T; Krattiger, Anatole F; Kreutz, Fernando T; Lall, Sanjaya; Lee, Keun; Mahoney, Richard; Martinez-Palomo, Adolfo; Mashelkar, R A; Matlin, Stephen A; Mzimba, Mandi; Oehler, Joachim; Ridley, Robert G; Senanayake, Pramilla; Singer, Peter; Yun, Mikyung

    2005-07-15

    Gross inequities in disease burden between developed and developing countries are now the subject of intense global attention. Public and private donors have marshaled resources and created organizational structures to accelerate the development of new health products and to procure and distribute drugs and vaccines for the poor. Despite these encouraging efforts directed primarily from and funded by industrialized countries, sufficiency and sustainability remain enormous challenges because of the sheer magnitude of the problem. Here we highlight a complementary and increasingly important means to improve health equity: the growing ability of some developing countries to undertake health innovation.

  5. Uncovering Health Care Inequalities among Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ward, Rolanda L.; Nichols, Amanda D.; Freedman, Ruth I.

    2010-01-01

    Even as attention is drawn to the increasing number of individuals who experience health inequalities in the United States, little is known about the health inequalities experienced by individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Current disability research mainly focuses on physical disabilities. This article discusses the health…

  6. Towards an Evidence-Based Approach to Tackling Health Inequalities: The English Experience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Killoran, Amanda; Kelly, Michael

    2004-01-01

    This short paper considers the development of an evidence-based approach to tackling health inequalities. Inequalities in health in England at the beginning of the 21st century have widened and are stark. Despite overall improvements in death rates, the growing gap between social groups means that now some parts of England have the same levels of…

  7. Health Inequalities through the Lens of Health Capital Theory: Issues, Solutions, and Future Directions.

    PubMed

    Galama, Titus J; van Kippersluis, Hans

    2013-06-01

    We explore what health-capital theory has to offer in terms of informing and directing research into health inequality. We argue that economic theory can help in identifying mechanisms through which specific socioeconomic indicators and health interact. Our reading of the literature, and our own work, leads us to conclude that non-degenerate versions of the Grossman model (1972a;b) and its extensions can explain many salient stylized facts on health inequalities. Yet, further development is required in at least two directions. First, a childhood phase needs to be incorporated, in recognition of the importance of childhood endowments and investments in the determination of later-life socioeconomic and health outcomes. Second, a unified theory of joint investment in skill (or human) capital and in health capital could provide a basis for a theory of the relationship between education and health. PMID:24570580

  8. Health Inequalities through the Lens of Health Capital Theory: Issues, Solutions, and Future Directions

    PubMed Central

    Galama, Titus J.; van Kippersluis, Hans

    2013-01-01

    We explore what health-capital theory has to offer in terms of informing and directing research into health inequality. We argue that economic theory can help in identifying mechanisms through which specific socioeconomic indicators and health interact. Our reading of the literature, and our own work, leads us to conclude that non-degenerate versions of the Grossman model (1972a;b) and its extensions can explain many salient stylized facts on health inequalities. Yet, further development is required in at least two directions. First, a childhood phase needs to be incorporated, in recognition of the importance of childhood endowments and investments in the determination of later-life socioeconomic and health outcomes. Second, a unified theory of joint investment in skill (or human) capital and in health capital could provide a basis for a theory of the relationship between education and health. PMID:24570580

  9. The financial crisis, health and health inequities in Europe: the need for regulations, redistribution and social protection

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    In 2009, Europe was hit by one of the worst debt crises in history. Although the Eurozone crisis is often depicted as an effect of government mismanagement and corruption, it was a consequence of the 2008 U.S. banking crisis which was caused by more than three decades of neoliberal policies, financial deregulation and widening economic inequities. Evidence indicates that the Eurozone crisis disproportionately affected vulnerable populations in society and caused sharp increases of suicides and deaths due to mental and behavioral disorders especially among those who lost their jobs, houses and economic activities because of the crisis. Although little research has, so far, studied the effects of the crisis on health inequities, evidence showed that the 2009 economic downturn increased the number of people living in poverty and widened income inequality especially in European countries severely hit by the debt crisis. Data, however, also suggest favorable health trends and a reduction of traffic deaths fatalities in the general population during the economic recession. Moreover, egalitarian policies protecting the most disadvantaged populations with strong social protections proved to be effective in decoupling the link between job losses and suicides. Unfortunately, policy responses after the crisis in most European countries have mainly consisted in bank bailouts and austerity programs. These reforms have not only exacerbated the debt crisis and widened inequities in wealth but also failed to address the root causes of the crisis. In order to prevent a future financial downturn and promote a more equitable and sustainable society, European governments and international institutions need to adopt new regulations of banking and finance as well as policies of economic redistribution and investment in social protection. These policy changes, however, require the abandonment of the neoliberal ideology to craft a new global political economy where markets and gross

  10. The financial crisis, health and health inequities in Europe: the need for regulations, redistribution and social protection.

    PubMed

    De Vogli, Roberto

    2014-01-01

    In 2009, Europe was hit by one of the worst debt crises in history. Although the Eurozone crisis is often depicted as an effect of government mismanagement and corruption, it was a consequence of the 2008 U.S. banking crisis which was caused by more than three decades of neoliberal policies, financial deregulation and widening economic inequities.Evidence indicates that the Eurozone crisis disproportionately affected vulnerable populations in society and caused sharp increases of suicides and deaths due to mental and behavioral disorders especially among those who lost their jobs, houses and economic activities because of the crisis. Although little research has, so far, studied the effects of the crisis on health inequities, evidence showed that the 2009 economic downturn increased the number of people living in poverty and widened income inequality especially in European countries severely hit by the debt crisis. Data, however, also suggest favorable health trends and a reduction of traffic deaths fatalities in the general population during the economic recession. Moreover, egalitarian policies protecting the most disadvantaged populations with strong social protections proved to be effective in decoupling the link between job losses and suicides.Unfortunately, policy responses after the crisis in most European countries have mainly consisted in bank bailouts and austerity programs. These reforms have not only exacerbated the debt crisis and widened inequities in wealth but also failed to address the root causes of the crisis. In order to prevent a future financial downturn and promote a more equitable and sustainable society, European governments and international institutions need to adopt new regulations of banking and finance as well as policies of economic redistribution and investment in social protection. These policy changes, however, require the abandonment of the neoliberal ideology to craft a new global political economy where markets and gross

  11. The financial crisis, health and health inequities in Europe: the need for regulations, redistribution and social protection.

    PubMed

    De Vogli, Roberto

    2014-07-25

    In 2009, Europe was hit by one of the worst debt crises in history. Although the Eurozone crisis is often depicted as an effect of government mismanagement and corruption, it was a consequence of the 2008 U.S. banking crisis which was caused by more than three decades of neoliberal policies, financial deregulation and widening economic inequities.Evidence indicates that the Eurozone crisis disproportionately affected vulnerable populations in society and caused sharp increases of suicides and deaths due to mental and behavioral disorders especially among those who lost their jobs, houses and economic activities because of the crisis. Although little research has, so far, studied the effects of the crisis on health inequities, evidence showed that the 2009 economic downturn increased the number of people living in poverty and widened income inequality especially in European countries severely hit by the debt crisis. Data, however, also suggest favorable health trends and a reduction of traffic deaths fatalities in the general population during the economic recession. Moreover, egalitarian policies protecting the most disadvantaged populations with strong social protections proved to be effective in decoupling the link between job losses and suicides.Unfortunately, policy responses after the crisis in most European countries have mainly consisted in bank bailouts and austerity programs. These reforms have not only exacerbated the debt crisis and widened inequities in wealth but also failed to address the root causes of the crisis. In order to prevent a future financial downturn and promote a more equitable and sustainable society, European governments and international institutions need to adopt new regulations of banking and finance as well as policies of economic redistribution and investment in social protection. These policy changes, however, require the abandonment of the neoliberal ideology to craft a new global political economy where markets and gross

  12. Addressing the social determinants of children's health: a cliff analogy.

    PubMed

    Jones, Camara Phyllis; Jones, Clara Yvonne; Perry, Geraldine S; Barclay, Gillian; Jones, Camille Arnel

    2009-01-01

    This paper presents a "Cliff Analogy" illustrating three dimensions of health intervention to help people who are falling off of the cliff of good health: providing health services, addressing the social determinants of health, and addressing the social determinants of equity. In the terms of the analogy, health services include an ambulance at the bottom of the cliff, a net or trampoline halfway down, and a fence at the top of the cliff. Addressing the social determinants of health involves the deliberate movement of the population away from the edge of the cliff. Addressing the social determinants of equity acknowledges that the cliff is three-dimensional and involves interventions on the structures, policies, practices, norms, and values that differentially distribute resources and risks along the cliff face. The authors affirm that we need to address both the social determinants of health, including poverty, and the social determinants of equity, including racism, if we are to improve health outcomes and eliminate health disparities.

  13. Early childhood health, reproduction of economic inequalities and the persistence of health and mortality differentials

    PubMed Central

    Palloni, Alberto; Milesi, Carolina; White, Robert G; Turner, Alyn

    2009-01-01

    The persistence of adult health and mortality socioeconomic inequalities and the equally stubborn reproduction of social class inequalities are salient features in modern societies that puzzle researchers in seemingly unconnected research fields. Neither can be satisfactorily explained with standard theoretical frameworks. In the domain of health and mortality, it is unclear if and to what an extent adult health and mortality disparities across socioeconomic status (SES) are the product of attributes of the positions themselves, the partial result of health conditions established earlier in life that influence both adult health and economic success, or the outcome of the reverse impact of health status on SES. In the domain of social stratification, the transmission of inequalities across generations has been remarkably resistant to satisfactory explanations. Although the literature on social stratification is by and large silent about the role played by early health status in shaping adult socioeconomic opportunities, new research on human capital formation suggests this is a serious error of omission. In this paper we propose to investigate the connections between these two domains. We use data from male respondents of the 1958 British Cohort to estimate (a) the influence of early health conditions on adult SES and (b) the contribution of early health status to observed adult health differentials. The model incorporates early conditions as determinants of traits that enhance (inhibit) social mobility and also conventional and unconventional factors that affect adult health and socioeconomic status. Our findings reveal that early childhood health plays a small, but non-trivial role as a determinant of adult SES and the adult socioeconomic gradient in health. These findings enrich current explanations of SES inequalities and of adult health and mortality disparities. PMID:19269728

  14. Health in Israel: patterns of equality and inequality.

    PubMed

    Shuval, J T

    1990-01-01

    While Israel does not have a nationalized health care system, 94.5% of its population is covered by comprehensive health insurance which includes curative and preventive ambulatory care as well as hospitalization. There is formal equality in access, distribution, and quality of the health services; nevertheless, there are pockets of deprivation that affect certain segments of the population. The paper focuses on three topics: (a) structure of the health care delivery system in terms of coverage, geographical and social distribution, and the public/private balance of the services; (b) processes of health care delivery in terms of utilization and quality; (c) health outcomes in terms of mortality, morbidity, health behavior, and disease vulnerability. Inequality in Israel appears to be structured in terms of six dimensions: coverage of health insurance, distribution of health services, the balance of public and private sectors of health services, utilization of existing services, quality of health services, and health outcomes as expressed by mortality, morbidity, health behavior and risk factors. Only two types of health care are not covered by the general health insurance: (a) dental care, and (b) long-term nursing care. Given the small area of Israel there are striking differences in the geographic distribution of health personnel of various types. There is evidence for gaps between needs and institutional services for many elderly who are on waiting lists for institutionalization. The ratio of primary care physicians to population is 1:2326 in development towns and 1:1852 in the older more established veteran communities. Kibbutzim, which are also located in large part in geographically remote areas, enjoy high quality health services and are not characterized by low ratios of health care personnel. In 1968-69, 6% of those insured by the sick funds purchased services at least once from a private physician, while in 1975-76 this figure rose to 32%. As in other

  15. Social inequalities in health related behaviours in Barcelona

    PubMed Central

    Borrell, C.; Dominguez-Berjon, F.; Pasarin, M; Ferrando, J.; Rohlfs, I.; Nebot, M.

    2000-01-01

    OBJECTIVE—This study describes social class inequalities in health related behaviours (tobacco and alcohol consumption, physical activity) among a sample of general population over 14 years old in Barcelona.
DESIGN—Cross sectional study (Barcelona Health Interview Survey).
SETTING—Barcelona city (Spain).
PARTICIPANTS—A representative stratified sample of the non-institutionalised population resident in Barcelona was obtained. This study refers to the 4171 respondents aged over 14.
DATA—Social class was obtained from a Spanish adaptation of the British Registrar General classification. In addition, sociodemographic variables such as family structure and employment status were used. As health related behaviours tobacco consumption, alcohol consumption, usual physical activity and leisure time physical activity were analysed. Age adjusted percentages were compared by social class. Multivariate analysis was performed using logistic regression models.
MAIN RESULTS—Women in the upper social classes were more likely to smoke, the adjusted odds ratio (OR) for social class V in reference to social class I was 0.36 (95% confidence intervals (95%CI): 0.19, 0.67), while the opposite occurred among men although it was not statistically significant in multivariate analysis. Smoking cessation was more likely among men in the higher classes (OR for class V 0.41, 95%CI: 0.18, 0.90). Excessive alcohol consumption among men showed no differences between classes, while among women it was greater in the upper classes. Engaging in usual physical activity classified as "light or none" in men decreased with lowering social class (OR class IVa: 0.55 and OR class IVb: 0.47). Women of social classes IV and V were less likely to have two or more health risk behaviours (OR for class V 0.33, 95% CI: 0.18, 0.62).
CONCLUSION—Health damaging behaviours are differentially distributed among social classes in Barcelona. Health policies should take into account these

  16. First-class health: amenity wards, health insurance, and normalizing health care inequalities in Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Ellison, James

    2014-06-01

    In 2008, a government hospital in southwest Tanzania added a "first-class ward," which, unlike existing inpatient wards defined by sex, age, and ailment, would treat patients according to their wealth. A generation ago, Tanzanians viewed health care as a right of citizenship. In the 1980s and 1990s, structural adjustment programs and user fees reduced people's access to biomedical attention. Tanzania currently promotes "amenity" wards and health insurance to increase health care availability, generate revenue from patients and potential patients, and better integrate for-profit care. In this article, I examine people's discussions of these changes, drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in the 2000s and 1990s. I argue that Tanzanians criticize unequal access to care and health insurance, although the systemic structuring of inequalities is becoming normalized. People transform the language of socialism to frame individualized market-based care as mutual interdependence and moral necessity, articulating a new biomedical citizenship.

  17. Social inequalities in health from Ottawa to Vancouver: action for fair equality of opportunity.

    PubMed

    Ridde, Valéry; Guichard, Anne; Houéto, David

    2007-01-01

    The authors set out to show that the Ottawa Charter of 1986 has not been sufficiently accepted over the past twenty years, even by those who use it as a strategic tool to guide interventions for reducing social inequalities in health. Although some public health policies do emphasize the reduction of social inequalities in health, only the Ottawa Charter appears to possess the status of an international declaration on the matter. Social inequalities in health are the systematic, avoidable, and unjust differences in health that persist between individuals and sub-groups of a population. Four examples from the field of health promotion serve to show that forgetting to combat social inequalities in health is not exclusive to the domain of public health. However, taking action against social inequalities in health does not equal tackling poverty. Moreover, intervening on the principle of equality of opportunity, on the basis of an ideology of meritocracy, or for the benefit of the population as a whole, without regard to sub-groups, only tends, at best, to reproduce inequalities. Although evidence is insufficient, there are studies that show that reducing social inequalities in health is not an aporia. Three explanations are advanced as to why social inequalities in health have been ignored by health promotion professionals. The Ottawa Charter had the merit of highlighting the struggle against social inequalities in health. Now, moving beyond the declarations, from the strategic framework provided by the Ottawa Charter and in accordance with the Bangkok Charter, it is time to show proof of voluntarism. Several priorities for the future are suggested and the International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE) should be responsible for advocating for them. PMID:17685074

  18. Social inequalities in health from Ottawa to Vancouver: action for fair equality of opportunity.

    PubMed

    Ridde, Valéry; Guichard, Anne; Houéto, David

    2007-01-01

    The authors set out to show that the Ottawa Charter of 1986 has not been sufficiently accepted over the past twenty years, even by those who use it as a strategic tool to guide interventions for reducing social inequalities in health. Although some public health policies do emphasize the reduction of social inequalities in health, only the Ottawa Charter appears to possess the status of an international declaration on the matter. Social inequalities in health are the systematic, avoidable, and unjust differences in health that persist between individuals and sub-groups of a population. Four examples from the field of health promotion serve to show that forgetting to combat social inequalities in health is not exclusive to the domain of public health. However, taking action against social inequalities in health does not equal tackling poverty. Moreover, intervening on the principle of equality of opportunity, on the basis of an ideology of meritocracy, or for the benefit of the population as a whole, without regard to sub-groups, only tends, at best, to reproduce inequalities. Although evidence is insufficient, there are studies that show that reducing social inequalities in health is not an aporia. Three explanations are advanced as to why social inequalities in health have been ignored by health promotion professionals. The Ottawa Charter had the merit of highlighting the struggle against social inequalities in health. Now, moving beyond the declarations, from the strategic framework provided by the Ottawa Charter and in accordance with the Bangkok Charter, it is time to show proof of voluntarism. Several priorities for the future are suggested and the International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE) should be responsible for advocating for them.

  19. Income redistribution is not enough: income inequality, social welfare programs, and achieving equity in health

    PubMed Central

    Starfield, Barbara; Birn, Anne‐Emanuelle

    2007-01-01

    Income inequality is widely assumed to be a major contributor to poorer health at national and subnational levels. According to this assumption, the most appropriate policy strategy to improve equity in health is income redistribution. This paper considers reasons why tackling income inequality alone could be an inadequate approach to reducing differences in health across social classes and other population subgroups, and makes the case that universal social programs are critical to reducing inequities in health. A health system oriented around a strong primary care base is an example of such a strategy. PMID:18000124

  20. Income redistribution is not enough: income inequality, social welfare programs, and achieving equity in health.

    PubMed

    Starfield, Barbara; Birn, Anne-Emanuelle

    2007-12-01

    Income inequality is widely assumed to be a major contributor to poorer health at national and subnational levels. According to this assumption, the most appropriate policy strategy to improve equity in health is income redistribution. This paper considers reasons why tackling income inequality alone could be an inadequate approach to reducing differences in health across social classes and other population subgroups, and makes the case that universal social programs are critical to reducing inequities in health. A health system oriented around a strong primary care base is an example of such a strategy.

  1. Opportunities and challenges of using technology to address health disparities.

    PubMed

    Rivers, Brian M; Bernhardt, Jay M; Fleisher, Linda; Green, Bernard Lee

    2014-03-01

    During a panel presentation at the American Association for Cancer Research Cancer Health Disparities Conference titled 'Opportunities and challenges of using technology to address health disparities', the latest scientific advances in the application and utilization of mobile technology and/or mobile-health (mHealth) interventions to address cancer health disparities were discussed. The session included: an examination of overall population trends in the uptake of technology and the potential of addressing health disparities through such media; an exploration of the conceptual issues and challenges in the construction of mHealth interventions to address disparate and underserved populations; and a presentation of pilot study findings on the acceptability and feasibility of using mHealth interventions to address prostate cancer disparities among African-American men.

  2. Income inequality and self-rated health in Stockholm, Sweden: a test of the 'income inequality hypothesis' on two levels of aggregation.

    PubMed

    Rostila, Mikael; Kölegård, Maria L; Fritzell, Johan

    2012-04-01

    The number of studies analysing income inequality and health are voluminous. However, when empirically testing the income inequality hypothesis, the level of aggregation could be crucial for whether we find an association or not and for the mechanisms we believe are active. This study hence investigates: (1) the two-year lagged effect by income inequality on health at two levels of aggregation; municipalities and neighbourhoods in Sweden; (2) whether spending on social goods accounts for the association between income inequality and health; (3) the effect by income inequality among the affluent and the disadvantaged in municipalities and neighbourhoods, respectively. The empirical data is based on a Swedish public health survey in 2002 and includes residents of Stockholm aged 18-84 years. The sample consists of 28,092 individuals nested within 22 municipalities and 709 neighbourhoods in the county of Stockholm with a non-response rate of 37 percent. A total population register (HSIA) is further used for the construction of contextual-level indicators. Primary method used is multi-level logistic regression. The findings indicate a moderate effect by high and very high income inequality on self-rated poor health at the municipality-level. The association, however, ceases after adjustment for spending on social goods. No detrimental effect by income inequality on self-rated health at the neighbourhood-level is found. The results further suggest that poor individuals residing in high inequality neighbourhoods do not have poorer health than those residing in low inequality contexts while high inequality is most deleterious for poor individuals at the municipality-level. In sum, the findings suggest that reduced spending on social goods could account for the association between income inequality and health at the municipality-level. The contrasting findings at the neighbourhood- and municipality-level indicate that it is important to consider the level of aggregation

  3. Inequalities in maternal health care utilization in rural Bangladesh.

    PubMed

    Mahabub-Ul-Anwar, Md; Rob, Ubaidur; Talukder, Md Noorunnabi

    The article examines the inequalities in utilization of maternal health care in rural areas of Bangladesh. It also attempts to identify the expenditure pattern for these services. Findings suggest that large disparities in the maternal health care utilization exist between the poorest and the richest population in Bangladesh. Two in three women in the highest wealth group receive antenatal care from qualified doctors as opposed to one in five women in the lowest wealth group. Almost all the deliveries occur at home among the lowest wealth group, whereas 16% of deliveries occur at health facilities among the highest wealth group. Wealth is also associated with the seeking of care for delivery-related complications. The practice of seeking services during post-natal period is not common and it varies positively with economic condition. Family savings is found to be the dominant source of paying the maternal health care services among the women in the highest wealth group. Cost has been found to be the most commonly cited reason for not seeking care for delivery complications. Eighty-four percent of women in the lowest wealth group compared to 13% of women in the highest wealth group did not seek treatment for delivery complications due to cost. Lack of perceived need of antenatal care (ANC) and postnatal care is the most pressing reason for not seeking these services. The study findings contain a number of implications for policy purposes that could be useful in devising ways to increase the utilization of maternal health care services.

  4. [Risk Society and inequalities in the health of workers].

    PubMed

    Tamez-González, Silvia; Pérez-Domínguez, Josué F

    2012-06-01

    This is a reflection on the current health situation of workers, as well as a reflection on the characteristics of their care system in the context of a globalized world. In order to present this reflection, the first part is focused on the discussion of the main concepts of globalization and risk society. On the second part, and according to the conceptual framework established on the first part, a statistical perspective of workers' health around the world is suggested, emphasizing on the existing inequity between thought-to-be developed world and the developing or poor countries. On the next part, a discussion related to health insurance systems and their incompetence to tackle efficiently workers' health outcomes is established. On the final part, a reflection on the need to reframe the approach and action strategies for improving health status of workers and their families is suggested; this part of the reflection is focused on the recovery of "good life" and human sense of life.

  5. Influence of macrosocial policies on women's health and gender inequalities in health.

    PubMed

    Borrell, Carme; Palència, Laia; Muntaner, Carles; Urquía, Marcelo; Malmusi, Davide; O'Campo, Patricia

    2014-01-01

    Gender inequalities in health have been widely described, but few studies have examined the upstream sources of these inequalities in health. The objectives of this review are 1) to identify empirical papers that assessed the effect of gender equality policies on gender inequalities in health or on women's health by using between-country (or administrative units within a country) comparisons and 2) to provide an example of published evidence on the effects of a specific policy (parental leave) on women's health. We conducted a literature search covering the period from 1970 to 2012, using several bibliographical databases. We assessed 1,238 abstracts and selected 19 papers that considered gender equality policies, compared several countries or different states in 1 country, and analyzed at least 1 health outcome among women or compared between genders. To illustrate specific policy effects, we also selected articles that assessed associations between parental leave and women's health. Our review partially supports the hypothesis that Nordic social democratic welfare regimes and dual-earner family models best promote women's health. Meanwhile, enforcement of reproductive policies, mainly studied across US states, is associated with better mental health outcomes, although less with other outcomes. Longer paid maternity leave was also generally associated with better mental health and longer duration of breastfeeding.

  6. Resistance in Unjust Times: Archer, Structured Agency and the Sociology of Health Inequalities.

    PubMed

    Scambler, Graham

    2013-02-01

    Few sociologists dissent from the notion that the mid- to late 1970s witnessed a shift in capitalism's modus operandi. Its association with a rapid increase of social and material inequality is beyond dispute. This article opens with a brief summation of contemporary British trends in economic inequalities, and finds an echo of these trends in health inequalities. It is suggested that the sociology of health inequalities in Britain lacks an analysis of agency, and that such an analysis is crucial. A case is made that the recent critical realist contribution of Margaret Archer on 'internal conversations' lends itself to an understanding of agency that is salient here. The article develops her typology of internal conversations to present characterizations of the 'focused autonomous reflexives' whose mind-sets are causally efficacious for producing and reproducing inequalities, and the 'dedicated meta-reflexives' whose casts of mind might yet predispose them to mobilize resistance to inequalities.

  7. Understanding and eliminating racial inequalities in women's health in the United States: the role of the weathering conceptual framework.

    PubMed

    Geronimus, A T

    2001-01-01

    I emphasize 3 features of racial inequality in women's health: It is greatest during young and middle adulthood; in some instances its severity is far greater than national comparisons suggest; and excessive levels of chronic morbidity and disability are widespread among African-American women, regardless of socioeconomic position. I propose that the weathering framework better captures these aspects of health inequality than do developmental models or those that focus on the role of poverty or individual unhealthy behaviors alone. Instead, weathering suggests that African-American women experience early health deterioration as a consequence of the cumulative impact of repeated experience with social, economic, or political exclusion. This includes the physical cost of engaging actively to address structural barriers to achievement and well-being. The weathering framework can be applied to research, to clinical and public health practice, and to social policy and political action.

  8. Addressing Health Disparities in Chronic Kidney Disease

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Ta-Chien; Fan, I.-Chun; Liu, Michael Shi-Yung; Su, Ming-Daw; Chiang, Po-Huang

    2014-01-01

    According to the official health statistics, Taiwan has the highest prevalence of end stage renal disease (ESRD) in the world. Each year, around 60,000 ESRD patients in Taiwan consume 6% of the national insurance budget for dialysis treatment. The prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) has been climbing during 2008–2012. However, the spatial disparities and clustering of CKD at the public health level have rarely been discussed. The aims of this study are to explore the possible population level risk factors and identify any clusters of CKD, using the national health insurance database. The results show that the ESRD prevalence in females is higher than that in males. ESRD medical expenditure constitutes 87% of total CKD medical expenditure. Pre-CKD and pre-ESRD disease management might slow the progression from CKD to ESRD. After applying ordinary least-squares regression, the percentages of high education status and the elderly in the townships are positively correlated with CKD prevalence. Geographically weighted regression and Local Moran’s I are used for identifying the clusters in southern Taiwan. The findings can be important evidence for earlier and targeted community interventions and reducing the health disparities of CKD. PMID:25514144

  9. Addressing health disparities in chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Chan, Ta-Chien; Fan, I -Chun; Liu, Michael Shi-Yung; Su, Ming-Daw; Chiang, Po-Huang

    2014-12-01

    According to the official health statistics, Taiwan has the highest prevalence of end stage renal disease (ESRD) in the world. Each year, around 60,000 ESRD patients in Taiwan consume 6% of the national insurance budget for dialysis treatment. The prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) has been climbing during 2008–2012.However, the spatial disparities and clustering of CKD at the public health level have rarely been discussed. The aims of this study are to explore the possible population level risk factors and identify any clusters of CKD, using the national health insurance database.The results show that the ESRD prevalence in females is higher than that in males. ESRD medical expenditure constitutes 87% of total CKD medical expenditure. Pre-CKD and pre-ESRD disease management might slow the progression from CKD to ESRD. After applying ordinary least-squares regression, the percentages of high education status and the elderly in the townships are positively correlated with CKD prevalence. Geographically weighted regression and Local Moran's I are used for identifying the clusters in southern Taiwan. The findings can be important evidence for earlier and targeted community interventions and reducing the health disparities of CKD.

  10. Addressing health disparities in chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Chan, Ta-Chien; Fan, I-Chun; Liu, Michael Shi-Yung; Su, Ming-Daw; Chiang, Po-Huang

    2014-12-11

    According to the official health statistics, Taiwan has the highest prevalence of end stage renal disease (ESRD) in the world. Each year, around 60,000 ESRD patients in Taiwan consume 6% of the national insurance budget for dialysis treatment. The prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) has been climbing during 2008-2012. However, the spatial disparities and clustering of CKD at the public health level have rarely been discussed. The aims of this study are to explore the possible population level risk factors and identify any clusters of CKD, using the national health insurance database. The results show that the ESRD prevalence in females is higher than that in males. ESRD medical expenditure constitutes 87% of total CKD medical expenditure. Pre-CKD and pre-ESRD disease management might slow the progression from CKD to ESRD. After applying ordinary least-squares regression, the percentages of high education status and the elderly in the townships are positively correlated with CKD prevalence. Geographically weighted regression and Local Moran's I are used for identifying the clusters in southern Taiwan. The findings can be important evidence for earlier and targeted community interventions and reducing the health disparities of CKD.

  11. Regional inequalities in health and health care in Finland and Norway.

    PubMed

    Salmela, R

    1993-04-01

    One of the main health policy goals in Finland and Norway is to decrease regional differences in health status and in accessibility of health services. The purpose of this paper is to analyze how this policy has been implemented, how its goals have been achieved, and what the obstacles are to it. It is of special interest to assess whether the centralized Finnish planning system has been more successful in the implementation of this policy, than the more decentralized system in Norway. Of these two countries, only Norway has applied any objective computing criteria for assessing the relative need of health care resources in each province or municipality. Neither of these two countries is using any relevant statistical indicators to describe the present situation, or time-related trends in regional inequities. According to available data the regional inequalities in health status and in the provision of health services have in both countries remained more or less unchanged over the last two decades. In future a more exact definition of the concept of equity, better methods for assessing the need for services, and an improved system of health statistics and indicators for monitoring progress in equity is needed. Also the potential of the health care policy in decreasing inequities in health should be questioned at a more fundamental level.

  12. Tackling inequalities in obesity: a protocol for a systematic review of the effectiveness of public health interventions at reducing socioeconomic inequalities in obesity amongst children

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background There is growing evidence of the impact of overweight and obesity on short- and long-term functioning, health and well-being. Internationally, childhood obesity rates continue to rise in some countries (for example, Mexico, India, China and Canada), although there is emerging evidence of a slowing of this increase or a plateauing in some age groups. In most European countries, the United States and Australia, however, socioeconomic inequalities in relation to obesity and risk factors for obesity are widening. Addressing inequalities in obesity, therefore, has a very high profile on the public health and health services agendas. However, there is a lack of accessible policy-ready evidence on what works in terms of interventions to reduce inequalities in obesity. Methods and design This article describes the protocol for a National Health Service Trust (NHS) National Institute for Health Research-funded systematic review of public health interventions at the individual, community and societal levels which might reduce socioeconomic inequalities in relation to obesity amongst children ages 0 to 18 years. The studies will be selected only if (1) they included a primary outcome that is a proxy for body fatness and (2) examined differential effects with regard to socioeconomic status (education, income, occupation, social class, deprivation and poverty) or the intervention was targeted specifically at disadvantaged groups (for example, children of the unemployed, lone parents, low income and so on) or at people who live in deprived areas. A rigorous and inclusive international literature search will be conducted for randomised and nonrandomised controlled trials, prospective and retrospective cohort studies (with and/or without control groups) and prospective repeat cross-sectional studies (with and/or without control groups). The following electronic databases will be searched: MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, PsycINFO, Social Science Citation Index, ASSIA, IBSS

  13. Exploring the generalisability of the association between income inequality and self-assessed health.

    PubMed

    Craig, Neil

    2005-06-01

    A growing between- and within-country literature suggests that the association between income inequality and health reflects individual- or area-level characteristics with which income inequality is associated, rather than the effects of income inequality per se. These studies also suggest that the association between income inequality and health is country-specific. Unresolved methodological issues include the geographical level at which to model the effects of income inequality, and the appropriate statistical methods to use. This study compares the results of single-level and multi-level logistic regression models estimating the association between income inequality and self-assessed health in local authorities in Scotland. The results suggest that there is a significant positive association between income inequality and health across local authorities in Scotland, even after adjusting for individual-level socio-economic status. They also suggest that there is significant local authority-level variation in self-assessed health, but this is small compared to the variation at the individual level. Income and other measures of individuals' socio-economic status are more strongly associated with self-assessed health than income inequality. This study provides further evidence that the income inequality:health association is place-specific. It also suggests that methodological choices regarding the ways of estimating the association between self-assessed health, individual-level socio-economic status and area-level income inequality may not make a substantive difference to the results when contextual effects are small. Further work is required to test the sensitivity of these conclusions to alternative levels of geographical aggregation.

  14. Gender (in)equality among employees in elder care: implications for health

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Gendered practices of working life create gender inequalities through horizontal and vertical gender segregation in work, which may lead to inequalities in health between women and men. Gender equality could therefore be a key element of health equity in working life. Our aim was to analyze what gender (in)equality means for the employees at a woman-dominated workplace and discuss possible implications for health experiences. Methods All caregiving staff at two workplaces in elder care within a municipality in the north of Sweden were invited to participate in the study. Forty-five employees participated, 38 women and 7 men. Seven focus group discussions were performed and led by a moderator. Qualitative content analysis was used to analyze the focus groups. Results We identified two themes. "Advocating gender equality in principle" showed how gender (in)equality was seen as a structural issue not connected to the individual health experiences. "Justifying inequality with individualism" showed how the caregivers focused on personalities and interests as a justification of gender inequalities in work division. The justification of gender inequality resulted in a gendered work division which may be related to health inequalities between women and men. Gender inequalities in work division were primarily understood in terms of personality and interests and not in terms of gender. Conclusion The health experience of the participants was affected by gender (in)equality in terms of a gendered work division. However, the participants did not see the gendered work division as a gender equality issue. Gender perspectives are needed to improve the health of the employees at the workplaces through shifting from individual to structural solutions. A healthy-setting approach considering gender relations is needed to achieve gender equality and fairness in health status between women and men. PMID:22217427

  15. Has the Rajiv Aarogyasri Community Health Insurance Scheme of Andhra Pradesh Addressed the Educational Divide in Accessing Health Care?

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Mala; Singh, Prabal Vikram; Katyal, Anuradha; Samarth, Amit; Bergkvist, Sofi; Renton, Adrian; Netuveli, Gopalakrishnan

    2016-01-01

    Background Equity of access to healthcare remains a major challenge with families continuing to face financial and non-financial barriers to services. Lack of education has been shown to be a key risk factor for 'catastrophic' health expenditure (CHE), in many countries including India. Consequently, ways to address the education divide need to be explored. We aimed to assess whether the innovative state-funded Rajiv Aarogyasri Community Health Insurance Scheme of Andhra Pradesh state launched in 2007, has achieved equity of access to hospital inpatient care among households with varying levels of education. Methods We used the National Sample Survey Organization 2004 survey as our baseline and the same survey design to collect post-intervention data from 8623 households in the state in 2012. Two outcomes, hospitalisation and CHE for inpatient care, were estimated using education as a measure of socio-economic status and transforming levels of education into ridit scores. We derived relative indices of inequality by regressing the outcome measures on education, transformed as a ridit score, using logistic regression models with appropriate weights and accounting for the complex survey design. Findings Between 2004 and 2012, there was a 39% reduction in the likelihood of the most educated person being hospitalised compared to the least educated, with reductions observed in all households as well as those that had used the Aarogyasri. For CHE the inequality disappeared in 2012 in both groups. Sub-group analyses by economic status, social groups and rural-urban residence showed a decrease in relative indices of inequality in most groups. Nevertheless, inequalities in hospitalisation and CHE persisted across most groups. Conclusion During the time of the Aarogyasri scheme implementation inequalities in access to hospital care were substantially reduced but not eliminated across the education divide. Universal access to education and schemes such as Aarogyasri have the

  16. Rising U.S. income inequality, gender and individual self-rated health, 1972-2004.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Hui

    2009-11-01

    The effect of income inequality on health has been a contested topic among social scientists. Most previous research is based on cross-sectional comparisons rather than temporal comparisons. Using data from the General Social Survey and the U.S. Census Bureau, this study examines how rising income inequality affects individual self-rated health in the U.S. from 1972 to 2004. Data are analyzed using hierarchical generalized linear models. The findings suggest a significant association between income inequality and individual self-rated health. The dramatic increase in income inequality from 1972 to 2004 increases the odds of worse self-rated health by 9.4 percent. These findings hold for three measures of income inequality: the Gini coefficient, the Atkinson Index, and the Theil entropy index. Results also suggest that overall income inequality and gender-specific income inequality harm men's, but not women's, self-rated health. These findings also hold for the three measures of income inequality. These findings suggest that inattention to gender composition may explain apparent discrepancies across previous studies.

  17. Prioritizing the Determinants of Social-health Inequality in Iran: A Multiple Attribute Decision Making Application

    PubMed Central

    Zaboli, Rouhollah; Tourani, Sogand; Seyedin, Seyed Hesam; Oliaie Manesh, Alireza

    2014-01-01

    Background: One of the main challenges of healthcare systems of developing countries is health inequality. Health inequality means inequality in individuals’ ability and proper functioning, resulting in inequality in social status and living conditions, which thwarts social interventions implemented by the government. Objectives: This study aimed to determine and prioritize the social determinants of health inequality in Iran. Materials and Methods: This was a mixed method study with two phases of qualitative and quantitative research. The study population consisted of experts dealing with social determinants of health. A purposive, stratified and non-random sampling method was used. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to collect qualitative data along with a multiple attribute decision making method for the quantitative phase of the research in which the TOPSIS technique was employed for prioritization. The qualitative findings were entered into NVivo for analysis, as were the quantitative data entered into MATLAB software. Results: The results approved the suitability of the conceptual framework of social determinants of health suggested by the WHO (world health organization) for studying social determinants of health inequality; however, this framework general and theoretical rather than a guideline for practice. Thus, in this study, 15 themes and 31 sub-themes were determined as social determinants of social health inequality in Iran. Based on the findings of the quantitative phase of our research, socioeconomic status, living facilities such as housing, and social integrity had the greatest effect on decreasing health inequality. Conclusions: A major part of the inequality in health distribution is avoidable because they are mostly caused by adjustable factors like economic conditions, educational conditions, employment, living facilities, etc. As in the majority of developing countries the living and health conditions are the same as Iran, the

  18. Income inequality, social capital and self-rated health and dental status in older Japanese.

    PubMed

    Aida, Jun; Kondo, Katsunori; Kondo, Naoki; Watt, Richard G; Sheiham, Aubrey; Tsakos, Georgios

    2011-11-01

    The erosion of social capital in more unequal societies is one mechanism for the association between income inequality and health. However, there are relatively few multi-level studies on the relation between income inequality, social capital and health outcomes. Existing studies have not used different types of health outcomes, such as dental status, a life-course measure of dental disease reflecting physical function in older adults, and self-rated health, which reflects current health status. The objective of this study was to assess whether individual and community social capital attenuated the associations between income inequality and two disparate health outcomes, self-rated health and dental status in Japan. Self-administered questionnaires were mailed to subjects in an ongoing Japanese prospective cohort study, the Aichi Gerontological Evaluation Study Project in 2003. Responses in Aichi, Japan, obtained from 5715 subjects and 3451 were included in the final analysis. The Gini coefficient was used as a measure of income inequality. Trust and volunteering were used as cognitive and structural individual-level social capital measures. Rates of subjects reporting mistrust and non-volunteering in each local district were used as cognitive and structural community-level social capital variables respectively. The covariates were sex, age, marital status, education, individual- and community-level equivalent income and smoking status. Dichotomized responses of self-rated health and number of remaining teeth were used as outcomes in multi-level logistic regression models. Income inequality was significantly associated with poor dental status and marginally significantly associated with poor self-rated health. Community-level structural social capital attenuated the covariate-adjusted odds ratio of income inequality for self-rated health by 16% whereas the association between income inequality and dental status was not substantially changed by any social capital

  19. Can social inclusion policies reduce health inequalities in sub-Saharan Africa?--A rapid policy appraisal.

    PubMed

    Rispel, Laetitia C; de Sousa, César A D Palha; Molomo, Boitumelo G

    2009-08-01

    implementation capacity problems. The key messages to sub-Saharan African governments include: health inequalities must be measured; social policies must be carefully designed and effectively implemented addressing the constraints identified; monitoring and evaluation systems need improvement; and participation of the community needs to be encouraged through conducive and enabling environments. There is a need for a strong movement by civil society to address health inequalities and to hold governments accountable for improved health and reduced health inequalities.

  20. Global influences on milk purchasing in New Zealand – implications for health and inequalities

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Moira B; Signal, Louise

    2009-01-01

    Background Economic changes and policy reforms, consistent with economic globalization, in New Zealand in the mid-1980s, combined with the recent global demand for dairy products, particularly from countries undergoing a 'nutrition transition', have created an environment where a proportion of the New Zealand population is now experiencing financial difficulty purchasing milk. This situation has the potential to adversely affect health. Discussion Similar to other developed nations, widening income disparities and health inequalities have resulted from economic globalization in New Zealand; with regard to nutrition, a proportion of the population now faces food poverty. Further, rates of overweight/obesity and chronic diseases have increased in recent decades, primarily affecting indigenous people and lower socio-economic groups. Economic globalization in New Zealand has changed the domestic milk supply with regard to the consumer and may shed light on the link between globalization, nutrition and health outcomes. This paper describes the economic changes in New Zealand, specifically in the dairy market and discusses how these changes have the potential to create inequalities and adverse health outcomes. The implications for the success of current policy addressing chronic health outcomes is discussed, alternative policy options such as subsidies, price controls or alteration of taxation of recommended foods relative to 'unhealthy' foods are presented and the need for further research is considered. Summary Changes in economic ideology in New Zealand have altered the focus of policy development, from social to commercial. To achieve equity in health and improve access to social determinants of health, such as healthy nutrition, policy-makers must give consideration to health outcomes when developing and implementing economic policy, both national and global. PMID:19152688

  1. Addressing the physical health of people with serious mental illness: A potential solution for an enduring problem.

    PubMed

    Happell, Brenda; Gaskin, Cadeyrn J; Stanton, Robert

    2016-03-01

    People with serious mental illness face significant inequalities in physical health care. As a result, the risk of cardiometabolic disorders and premature mortality is far greater than that observed in the general population. Contributiung to this disparity, is the lack of routine physical health screening by mental health clinicians. One possible solution is the implimentation of a physical health nurse consultant, whose role is to monitor and coordinate the physical health care of people with serious mental illness. Current evidence supports the implimentation of such a role, and a failure to address the widening gaps in physical health care will only serve to increase the disparities faced by people with serious mental illness.

  2. Public views about health causation, attributions of responsibility, and inequality.

    PubMed

    Lundell, Helen; Niederdeppe, Jeff; Clarke, Christopher

    2013-01-01

    Success in addressing health disparities and their social determinants will require understanding public perceptions of health causation, attributions of responsibility, and potential solutions. To explore these perceptions, the authors conducted 12 focus groups (6 with liberals, 6 conservatives; N = 93 participants) in a large U.S. Northeastern state. Participants communicated highly nuanced views about health causation and disparities, identifying layers of responsibility for health. However, individual behaviors and personal responsibility dominated the discussion and served as a counterargument to the significance of social determinants. Participants also showed limited awareness of the range of policies that could be adopted to address health disparities. As policy initiatives benefit from public support in gaining political traction, the authors suggest research paths and possible communication strategies for scholars and advocates. PMID:23679219

  3. Socioeconomic determinants of health. Children, inequalities, and health.

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, H.

    1997-01-01

    This article describes a growing body of evidence showing the adverse effects of the widening income gap on the health and welfare of children and young people. The effects of this go well beyond morbidity and mortality and can also be seen in the areas of crime, violence, and educational attainment. There is a need for evidence based policy in this area, but meanwhile there is scope for intervention in pregnancy and the early years, and good evidence that this is effective. A number of well evaluated interventions not necessarily directly related to health, such as early learning programmes and social support for parents, promise to have beneficial health effects. PMID:9133901

  4. Lay perceptions of health and environmental inequalities and their associations to mental health.

    PubMed

    Lima, Maria Luisa; Morais, Rita

    2015-11-01

    Health inequalities are very well documented in epidemiological research: rich people live longer and have fewer diseases than poor people. Recently, a growing amount of evidence from environmental sciences confirms that poor people are also more exposed to pollution and other environmental threats. However, research in the social sciences has shown a broad lack of awareness about health inequalities. In this paper, based on data collected in Portugal, we will analyze the consciousness of both health and environmental injustices and test one hypothesis for this social blindness. The results show, even more clearly than before, that public opinion tends to see rich and poor people as being equally susceptible to health and environmental events. Furthermore, those who have this equal view of the world present lower levels of depression and anxiety. Following cognitive adaptation theory, this "belief in an equal world" can be interpreted as a protective positive illusion about social justice, particularly relevant in one of the most unequal countries in Europe.

  5. Transport policy and health inequalities: a health impact assessment of Edinburgh's transport policy.

    PubMed

    Gorman, D; Douglas, M J; Conway, L; Noble, P; Hanlon, P

    2003-01-01

    Health impact assessment (HIA) can be used to examine the relationships between inequalities and health. This HIA of Edinburgh's transport policy demonstrates how HIA can examine how different transport policies can affect different population groupings to varying degrees. In this case, Edinburgh's economy is based on tourism, financial services and Government bodies. These need a good transport infrastructure, which maintains a vibrant city centre. A transport policy that promotes walking, cycling and public transport supports this and is also good for health. The HIA suggested that greater spend on public transport and supporting sustainable modes of transport was beneficial to health, and offered scope to reduce inequalities. This message was understood by the City Council and influenced the development of the city's transport and land-use strategies. The paper discusses how HIA can influence public policy.

  6. Beyond Status: Relating Status Inequality to Performance and Health in Teams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Christie, Amy M.; Barling, Julian

    2010-01-01

    Status structures in organizations are ubiquitous yet largely ignored in organizational research. We offer a conceptualization of team status inequality, or the extent to which status positions on a team are dispersed. Status inequality is hypothesized to be negatively related to individual performance and physical health for low-status…

  7. Defining health inequality: why Rawls succeeds where social welfare theory fails.

    PubMed

    Bommier, Antoine; Stecklov, Guy

    2002-05-01

    While there has been an important increase in methodological and empirical studies on health inequality, not much has been written on the theoretical foundation of health inequality measurement. We discuss several reasons why the classic welfare approach, which is the foundation of income inequality analysis, fails to provide a satisfactory foundation for health inequality analysis. We propose an alternative approach which is more closely linked to the WHO concept of equity in health and is also consistent with the ethical principles espoused by Rawls [A Theory of Justice. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1971]. This approach in its simplest form, is shown to be closely related to the concentration curve when health and income are positively related. Thus, the criteria presented in our paper provide an important theoretical foundation for empirical analysis using the concentration curve. We explore the properties of these approaches by developing policy scenarios and examining how various ethical criteria affect government strategies for targeting health interventions.

  8. Poor Child Health, Family Capital and Cumulative Inequality in Academic Achievement

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Margot

    2015-01-01

    Our understanding of health and social stratification can be enriched by testing tenets of cumulative inequality theory that emphasize how the accumulation of inequality is dependent on the developmental stage being considered; the duration and stability of poor health; and the family resources available to children. I analyze longitudinal data from the British National Child Development Study (N=9,252) to ask: 1) if child health is a source of cumulative inequality in academic achievement; 2) whether this relationship depends on the timing and duration of poor health; and 3) whether trajectories are sensitive to levels of family capital. The results suggest that the relationship between health and academic achievement emerges very early in life and persists, and that whether we observe shrinking or widening inequality as children age depends on when we measure their health, and whether children have access to compensatory resources. PMID:25926564

  9. The effects of health care reforms on health inequalities: a review and analysis of the European evidence base.

    PubMed

    Gelormino, Elena; Bambra, Clare; Spadea, Teresa; Bellini, Silvia; Costa, Giuseppe

    2011-01-01

    Health care is widely considered to be an important determinant of health. The health care systems of Western Europe have recently experienced significant reforms, under pressure from economic globalization. Similarly, in Eastern Europe, health care reforms have been undertaken in response to the demands of the new market economy. Both of these changes may influence equality in health outcomes. This article aims to identify the mechanisms through which health care may affect inequalities. The authors conducted a literature review of the effects on health inequalities of European health care reforms. Particular reference was paid to interventions in the fields of financing and pooling, allocation, purchasing, and provision of services. The majority of studies were from Western Europe, and the outcomes most often examined were access to services or income distribution. Overall, the quality of research was poor, confirming the need to develop an appropriate impact assessment methodology. Few studies were related to pooling, allocation, or purchasing. For financing and purchasing, the studies showed that publicly funded universal health care reduces the impact of ill health on income distribution, while insurance systems can increase inequalities in access to care. Out-of-pocket payments increase inequalities in access to care and contribute to impoverishment. Decentralizing health services can lead to geographic inequalities in health care access. Nationalized, publicly funded health care systems are most effective at reducing inequalities in access and reducing the effects on health of income distribution.

  10. [What type of welfare policy promotes health?: the puzzling interrelation of economic and health inequality].

    PubMed

    Hurrelmann, K; Richter, M; Rathmann, K

    2011-06-01

    In all highly developed countries, the overall health status of the population has significantly improved within the past 30 years. The most important reason for this is the increase in economic prosperity. Economic wealth, however, today is much more unequally distributed than it was 3 decades ago. Countries with relatively small disparities in the availability of material resources between socioeconomic groups, such as the Scandinavian countries, have better health outcomes on the population level. Health inequalities, however, have also reached a higher level than 30 years ago. As of today, we do not have convincing explanations for the interrelation of economic and health inequality. This paper gives an overview of existing research on a comparative basis. The research results are ambivalent. They show the puzzling result that the Scandinavian countries with their highly distributive welfare policy manage to achieve the comparatively highest level of economic, but not health, equity. Based on these results, we develop proposals for future research approaches. A central assumption is that in rich societies no longer only material, but more and more immaterial determinants are crucial for the formation of health inequality. The promotion of "salutogenic" self-management capabilities in socially disadvantaged groups is considered to be the central element in effective intervention strategies.

  11. State-level variations in income-related inequality in health and health achievement in the US.

    PubMed

    Xu, Ke Tom

    2006-07-01

    The objective of this study was to examine state-level variations in income-related inequality in health and overall health achievement in the US. Data that were representative of the US and each state in 2001 were extracted from the Current Population Survey 2001. Income-related inequality in health and health achievement were measured by Health Concentration and Health Achievement Indices, respectively. Significant variations were found across states in income-related inequality in health and health achievement. In particular, states in the south and east regions, on average, experienced a higher degree of health inequality and lower health achievement. About 80% of the state-level variation in health achievement could be explained by demographics, economic structure and performance, and state and local government spending and burden. In contrast, medical care resource indicators were not found to contribute to health achievement in states. States with better health achievement were more urbanized, had lower proportions of minority groups, females and the elderly, fewer individuals below the poverty line, larger primary industry, and lower unemployment rates. Also, per capita state and local government spending, particularly the proportion spent on public health, was positively associated with better health achievement. Because of the direct implications of health level and distribution in resource allocation and social norms, states with a lower level of health achievement need to prioritize efforts in increasing and reallocating resources to diminish health inequality and to improve population health.

  12. Reexamining the evidence of an ecological association between income inequality and health.

    PubMed

    Mellor, J M; Milyo, J

    2001-06-01

    Several recent studies have made the provocative claim that income inequality is an important determinant of population health. The primary evidence for this hypothesis is the repeated finding--across countries and across U.S. states--that there is an association between income inequality and aggregate health outcomes. However, most of these studies examine only a single cross section of data and employ few (or even no) control variables. We examine the relationship between income inequality and aggregate health outcomes across thirty countries over a four-decade span and across forty-eight U.S. states over five decades. In large part, our findings contradict previous claims.

  13. An Examination of Health Inequities among College Students by Sexual Orientation Identity and Sex

    PubMed Central

    Brittain, Danielle R.; Dinger, Mary K.

    2015-01-01

    Background Lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) college students may have an increased number of health inequities compared to their heterosexual counterparts. However, to date, no research has provided a comprehensive examination of health-related factors by sexual orientation identity and sex among a national sample of college students. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine physical, sexual, interpersonal relations/safety, and mental health inequities by sexual orientation identity and sex among a national sample of college students. Design and methods Participants (n=39,767) completed the National College Health Assessment II during the fall 2008/spring 2009 academic year. Hierarchical binary logistic regression analyses were used to examine health inequities by sexual orientation identity and sex. Results LGB students compared to heterosexual students, experienced multiple health inequities including higher rates of being verbally threatened and lower rates of physical activity and condom use. Conclusions An understanding of health inequities experienced by LGB college students is critical as during these years of transition, students engage in protective (e.g., physical activity) and risky (e.g., lack of condom use) health behaviours, establishing habits that could last a lifetime. Future research should be used to design and implement targeted public health strategies and policies to reduce health inequities and improve health-related quality of life among LGB college students. Significance for public health Health inequities based on sexual orientation identity and sex among college students is a critical public health concern. Based on the results of the current study, lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) college students experienced multiple physical, sexual, interpersonal relations and safety, and mental health inequities. This understanding of health inequities experienced by LGB college students is critical as during these years of transition, students

  14. Priorities and realities: addressing the rich-poor gaps in health status and service access in Indonesia

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Introduction Over the past four decades, the Indonesian health care system has greatly expanded and the health of Indonesian people has improved although the rich-poor gap in health status and service access remains an issue. The government has been trying to address these gaps and intensify efforts to improve the health of the poor following the economic crisis in 1998. Methods This paper examines trends and levels in socio-economic inequity of health and identifies critical factors constraining efforts to improve the health of the poor. Quantitative data were taken from the Indonesian Demographic Health Surveys and the National Socio-Economic Surveys, and qualitative data were obtained from interviews with individuals and groups representing relevant stakeholders. Results The health of the population has improved as indicated by child mortality decline and the increase in community access to health services. However, the continuing prevalence of malnourished children and the persisting socio-economic inequity of health suggest that efforts to improve the health of the poor have not yet been effective. Factors identified at institution and policy levels that have constrained improvements in health care access and outcomes for the poor include: the high cost of electing formal governance leaders; confused leadership roles in the health sector; lack of health inequity indicators; the generally weak capacity in the health care system, especially in planning and budgeting; and the leakage and limited coverage of programs for the poor. Conclusions Despite the government's efforts to improve the health of the poor, the rich-poor gap in health status and service access continues. Factors at institutional and policy levels are critical in contributing to the lack of efficiency and effectiveness for health programs that address the poor. PMID:22067727

  15. Welfare state regimes, health and health inequalities in adolescence: a multilevel study in 32 countries.

    PubMed

    Richter, Matthias; Rathman, Katharina; Nic Gabhainn, Saoirse; Zambon, Alessio; Boyce, William; Hurrelmann, Klaus

    2012-07-01

    Comparative research on health and health inequalities has recently started to establish a welfare regime perspective. The objective of this study was to determine whether different welfare regimes are associated with health and health inequalities among adolescents. Data were collected from the 'Health Behaviour in School-aged Children' study in 2006, including 11- to 15-year-old students from 32 countries (N = 141,091). Prevalence rates and multilevel logistic regression models were calculated for self-rated health (SRH) and health complaints. The results show that between 4 per cent and 7 per cent of the variation in both health outcomes is attributable to differences between countries. Compared to the Scandinavian regime, the Southern regime had lower odds ratios for SRH, while for health complaints the Southern and Eastern regime showed high odds ratios. The association between subjective health and welfare regime was largely unaffected by adjusting for individual socioeconomic position. After adjustment for the welfare regime typology, the country-level variations were reduced to 4.6 per cent for SRH and to 2.9 per cent for health complaints. Regarding cross-level interaction effects between welfare regimes and socioeconomic position, no clear regime-specific pattern was found. Consistent with research on adults this study shows that welfare regimes are important in explaining variations in adolescent health across countries.

  16. Health inequalities and the health of the poor: what do we know? What can we do?

    PubMed Central

    Gwatkin, D. R.

    2000-01-01

    The contents of this theme section of the Bulletin of the World Health Organization on "Inequalities in health" have two objectives: to present the initial findings from a new generation of research that has been undertaken in response to renewed concern for health inequalities; and to stimulate movement for action in order to correct the problems identified by this research. The research findings are presented in the five articles which follow. This Critical Reflection proposes two initial steps for the action needed to alleviate the problem; other suggestions are given by the participants in a Round Table discussion which is published after these articles. The theme section concludes with extracts from the classic writings of the nineteenth-century public health pioneer, William Farr, who is widely credited as one of the founders of the scientific study of health inequalities, together with a commentary. This Critical Reflection contributes to the discussion of the action needed by proposing two initial steps for action. That professionals who give very high priority to the distinct but related objectives of poverty alleviation, inequality reduction, and equity enhancement recognize that their shared concern for the distributional aspects of health policy is far more important than any differences that may divide them. That health policy goals, currently expressed as societal averages, be reformulated so that they point specifically to conditions among the poor and to poor-rich differences. For example, infant mortality rates among the poor or the differences in infant mortality between rich and poor sectors would be more useful indicators than the average infant mortality rates for the whole population. PMID:10686729

  17. The first federal budget under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau: Addressing social determinants of health?

    PubMed

    Ruckert, Arne; Labonté, Ronald

    2016-01-01

    A challenging budget environment during the Harper years has meant that crucial investments in the social determinants of health (SDHs) have increasingly been neglected. The tabling of what is widely considered a more progressive budget with expansionary fiscal elements under the new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, raises the question as to what extent this budget invests in policy areas that are crucial for achieving a more equitable distribution in the social determinants of health, as promised in the Liberal party platform. In this commentary, we argue that the first Liberal budget represents a step in the right direction, but that this first step needs to be followed up with a sustained commitment to address the pervasive (and unfair) social inequalities that are the root cause of persistent health inequities in Canada. We conclude that the first Trudeau budget, while moving in the right direction, does not fully embody the sustained policy changes needed to effectively address SDHs, including a more expansive role for the federal government in the redistribution of income and wealth. PMID:27526222

  18. Causes and determinants of inequity in maternal and child health in Vietnam

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Inequities in health are a major challenge for health care planners and policymakers globally. In Vietnam, rapid societal development presents a considerable risk for disadvantaged populations to be left behind. The aim of this review is to map the known causes and determinants of inequity in maternal and child health in Vietnam in order to promote policy action. Methods A review was performed through systematic searches of Pubmed and Proquest and manual searches of “grey literature.” A thematic content analysis guided by the conceptual framework suggested by the Commission on Social Determinants of Health was performed. Results More than thirty different causes and determinants of inequity in maternal and child health were identified. Some determinants worth highlighting were the influence of informal fees and the many testimonies of discrimination and negative attitudes from health staff towards women in general and ethnic minorities in particular. Research gaps were identified, such as a lack of studies investigating the influence of education on health care utilization, informal costs of care, and how psychosocial factors mediate inequity. Conclusions The evidence of corruption and discrimination as mediators of health inequity in Vietnam calls for attention and indicates a need for more structural interventions such as better governance and anti-discriminatory laws. More research is needed in order to fully understand the pathways of inequities in health in Vietnam and suggest areas for intervention for policy action to reach disadvantaged populations. PMID:22883138

  19. Measuring wealth-based health inequality among Indian children: the importance of equity vs efficiency.

    PubMed

    Arokiasamy, P; Pradhan, J

    2011-09-01

    The concentration index is the most commonly used measure of socio-economic-related health inequality. However, a critical constraint has been that it is just a measure of inequality. Equity is an important goal of health policy but the average level of health also matters. In this paper, we explore evidence of both these crucial dimensions-equity (inequality) and efficiency (average health)-in child health indicators by adopting the recently developed measure of the extended concentration index on the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3) data from India. An increasing degree of inequality aversion is used to measure health inequalities as well as achievement in the following child health indicators: under-2 child mortality, full immunization coverage, and prevalence of underweight, wasting and stunting among children. State-wise adjusted under-2 child mortality scores reveal an increasing trend with increasing values of inequality aversion, implying that under-2 child deaths have been significantly concentrated among the poor households. The level of adjusted under-2 child mortality scores increases significantly with the increasing value of aversion even in states advanced in the health transition, such as Kerala and Goa. The higher values of adjusted scores for lower values of aversion for child immunization coverage are evidence that richer households benefited most from the rise in full immunization coverage. However, the lack of radical changes in the adjusted scores for underweight among children with increasing degrees of aversion implies that household economic status was not the only determinant of poor nutritional status in India.

  20. Social inequalities in health: measuring the contribution of housing deprivation and social interactions for Spain

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Social factors have been proved to be main determinants of individuals’ health. Recent studies have also analyzed the contribution of some of those factors, such as education and job status, to socioeconomic inequalities in health. The aim of this paper is to provide new evidence about the factors driving socioeconomic inequalities in health for the Spanish population by including housing deprivation and social interactions as health determinants. Methods Cross-sectional study based on the Spanish sample of European Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) for 2006. The concentration index measuring income-related inequality in health is decomposed into the contribution of each determinant. Several models are estimated to test the influence of different regressors for three proxies of ill-health. Results Health inequality favouring the better-off is observed in the distribution of self-assessed health, presence of chronic diseases and presence of limiting conditions. Inequality is mainly explained, besides age, by social factors such as labour status and financial deprivation. Housing deprivation contributes to pro-rich inequality in a percentage ranging from 7.17% to 13.85%, and social interactions from 6.16% to 10.19%. The contribution of some groups of determinants significantly differs depending on the ill-health variable used. Conclusions Health inequalities can be mostly reduced or shaped by policy, as they are mainly explained by social determinants such as labour status, education and other socioeconomic conditions. The major role played on health inequality by variables taking part in social exclusion points to the need to focus on the most vulnerable groups. JEL Codes H51, I14, I18 PMID:23241384

  1. The Mexican experience in monitoring and evaluation of public policies addressing social determinants of health.

    PubMed

    Valle, Adolfo Martinez

    2016-01-01

    Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) have gradually become important and regular components of the policy-making process in Mexico since, and even before, the World Health Organization (WHO) Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH) called for interventions and policies aimed at tackling the social determinants of health (SDH). This paper presents two case studies to show how public policies addressing the SDH have been monitored and evaluated in Mexico using reliable, valid, and complete information, which is not regularly available. Prospera, for example, evaluated programs seeking to improve the living conditions of families in extreme poverty in terms of direct effects on health, nutrition, education and income. Monitoring of Prospera's implementation has also helped policy-makers identify windows of opportunity to improve the design and operation of the program. Seguro Popular has monitored the reduction of health inequalities and inequities evaluated the positive effects of providing financial protection to its target population. Useful and sound evidence of the impact of programs such as Progresa and Seguro Popular plus legal mandates, and a regulatory evaluation agency, the National Council for Social Development Policy Evaluation, have been fundamental to institutionalizing M&E in Mexico. The Mexican experience may provide useful lessons for other countries facing the challenge of institutionalizing the M&E of public policy processes to assess the effects of SDH as recommended by the WHO CSDH. PMID:26928215

  2. The Mexican experience in monitoring and evaluation of public policies addressing social determinants of health

    PubMed Central

    Valle, Adolfo Martinez

    2016-01-01

    Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) have gradually become important and regular components of the policy-making process in Mexico since, and even before, the World Health Organization (WHO) Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH) called for interventions and policies aimed at tackling the social determinants of health (SDH). This paper presents two case studies to show how public policies addressing the SDH have been monitored and evaluated in Mexico using reliable, valid, and complete information, which is not regularly available. Prospera, for example, evaluated programs seeking to improve the living conditions of families in extreme poverty in terms of direct effects on health, nutrition, education and income. Monitoring of Prospera's implementation has also helped policy-makers identify windows of opportunity to improve the design and operation of the program. Seguro Popular has monitored the reduction of health inequalities and inequities evaluated the positive effects of providing financial protection to its target population. Useful and sound evidence of the impact of programs such as Progresa and Seguro Popular plus legal mandates, and a regulatory evaluation agency, the National Council for Social Development Policy Evaluation, have been fundamental to institutionalizing M&E in Mexico. The Mexican experience may provide useful lessons for other countries facing the challenge of institutionalizing the M&E of public policy processes to assess the effects of SDH as recommended by the WHO CSDH. PMID:26928215

  3. The Mexican experience in monitoring and evaluation of public policies addressing social determinants of health.

    PubMed

    Valle, Adolfo Martinez

    2016-01-01

    Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) have gradually become important and regular components of the policy-making process in Mexico since, and even before, the World Health Organization (WHO) Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH) called for interventions and policies aimed at tackling the social determinants of health (SDH). This paper presents two case studies to show how public policies addressing the SDH have been monitored and evaluated in Mexico using reliable, valid, and complete information, which is not regularly available. Prospera, for example, evaluated programs seeking to improve the living conditions of families in extreme poverty in terms of direct effects on health, nutrition, education and income. Monitoring of Prospera's implementation has also helped policy-makers identify windows of opportunity to improve the design and operation of the program. Seguro Popular has monitored the reduction of health inequalities and inequities evaluated the positive effects of providing financial protection to its target population. Useful and sound evidence of the impact of programs such as Progresa and Seguro Popular plus legal mandates, and a regulatory evaluation agency, the National Council for Social Development Policy Evaluation, have been fundamental to institutionalizing M&E in Mexico. The Mexican experience may provide useful lessons for other countries facing the challenge of institutionalizing the M&E of public policy processes to assess the effects of SDH as recommended by the WHO CSDH.

  4. Why income inequality indexes do not apply to health risks.

    PubMed

    Cox, Louis Anthony

    2012-02-01

    Several recent papers have sought to apply inequality measures from economics, such as the Atkinson Index (AI) for inequality of income distributions, to compare the risk inequality of different mortality risk distributions in an effort to help promote efficiency and environmental justice in pollution-reducing interventions. Closer analysis suggests that such applications are neither logically coherent nor necessarily ethically desirable. Risk inequality comparisons should be based on axioms that apply to probabilistic risks, and should consider the multidimensional and time-varying nature of individual and community risks in order to increase efficiency and justice over time and generations. In light of the limitations of the AI applied to mortality risk distributions, it has not been demonstrated to have ethical or practical value in helping policymakers to identify air pollution management interventions that reduce (or minimize) risk and risk inequity.

  5. Racism and inequalities in health: notes towards an agenda for critical health psychology.

    PubMed

    Stephens, Christine

    2009-07-01

    Estacio (this issue) has provided a moving demonstration of the way in which racism impacts on health at interpersonal, societal and global levels and how the discourses that create and sustain unequal treatment may be identified in everyday mediated talk, including the use of humour. In this commentary I develop Estacio's discussion of the importance of racism in regard to health inequalities. Using her structure, I briefly suggest additional ways in which critical health psychologists may approach these issues by drawing on work from psychology and other disciplines to develop just approaches to health research and practice.

  6. Addressing gender inequality and intimate partner violence as critical barriers to an effective HIV response in sub-Saharan Africa

    PubMed Central

    Watts, Charlotte; Seeley, Janet

    2014-01-01

    Introduction In Africa, women and girls represent 57% of people living with HIV, with gender inequality and violence being an important structural determinant of their vulnerability. This commentary draws out lessons for a more effective combination response to the HIV epidemic from three papers recently published in JIAS. Discussion Hatcher and colleagues present qualitative data from women attending ante-natal clinics in Johannesburg, describing how HIV diagnosis during pregnancy and subsequent partner disclosure are common triggers for violence within relationships. The authors describe the challenges women face in adhering to medication or using services. Kyegombe and colleagues present a secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial in Uganda of SASA! – a community violence prevention programme. Along with promising community impacts on physical partner violence, significantly lower levels of sexual concurrency, condom use and HIV testing were reported by men in intervention communities. Remme and her colleagues present a systematic review of evidence on the costs and cost-effectiveness of gender-responsive HIV interventions. The review identified an ever-growing evidence base, but a paucity of accompanying economic analyses, making it difficult to assess the costs or value for money of gender-focused programmes. Conclusions There is a need to continue to accumulate evidence on the effectiveness and costs of different approaches to addressing gender inequality and violence as part of a combination HIV response. A clearer HIV-specific and broader synergistic vision of financing and programming needs to be developed, to ensure that the potential synergies between HIV-specific and broader gender-focused development investments can be used to best effect to address vulnerability of women and girls to both violence and HIV. PMID:25499456

  7. Addressing Special Education Inequity through Systemic Change: Contributions of Ecologically Based Organizational Consultation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Amanda L.; Artiles, Alfredo J.; Hernandez-Saca, David I.

    2015-01-01

    Since the inception of special education, scholars and practitioners have been concerned about the disproportionate representation of students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds among students identified with disabilities. Professional efforts to address this disproportionality have encompassed a range of targets, but scholars…

  8. Social Justice Leadership and Inclusion: Exploring Challenges in an Urban District Struggling to Address Inequities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeMatthews, David; Mawhinney, Hanne

    2014-01-01

    Research Approach: This cross case study describes the challenges that two principals working in one urban school district addressed while attempting to transform their school cultures to embrace an inclusion model. Analysis of interviews and observations in each school revealed the actions, values, and orientations of the individual leaders and…

  9. Recovering the Role of Reasoning in Moral Education to Address Inequity and Social Justice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nucci, Larry

    2016-01-01

    This article reasserts the centrality of reasoning as the focus for moral education. Attention to moral cognition must be extended to incorporate sociogenetic processes in moral growth. Moral education is not simply growth within the moral domain, but addresses capacities of students to engage in cross-domain coordination. Development beyond…

  10. Socioeconomic inequalities in health: a comparative longitudinal analysis using the European Community Household Panel.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Quevedo, Cristina; Jones, Andrew M; López-Nicolás, Angel; Rice, Nigel

    2006-09-01

    This study measures socioeconomic inequalities in health across European Union Member States between 1994 and 2001. The analysis is based on the European Community Household Panel Users' Database (ECHP-UDB) and uses two binary indicators of health limitations for the full 8 waves of available data. Short- and long-run concentration indices together with mobility and health achievement indices are derived for indicators of severe health limitation and any health limitation. Results demonstrate the existence of socioeconomic inequality in health across Member States in both the short-term (1 year) and the long-term (up to 8 years), with health limitations concentrated among those with lower incomes. For all countries, the long-run indices show that income-related inequalities in health widen over time, in the sense that the longer the period over which an individual's health and income are measured the greater the measure of income-related health inequality. The ranking of countries according to their prevalence of illness differs from ranking by overall health achievement, which takes account of inequalities. This means that an equity-efficiency trade-off has to be faced in evaluating the performance of different countries and in comparing countries with diverse health and social welfare systems.

  11. Smoking, educational status and health inequity in India.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Rajeev

    2006-07-01

    Health related behaviours, especially smoking and tobacco use, are major determinants of health and lead to health inequities. Smoking leads to acute respiratory diseases, tuberculosis and asthma in younger age groups and non communicable diseases such as chronic lung disease, cardiovascular diseases and cancer in middle and older age. We observed an inverse association of educational status with tobacco use (smoking and other forms) in western Indian State of Rajasthan. In successive cross-sectional epidemiological studies- the Jaipur Heart Watch (JHW)- in rural (JHWR; n=3148, men=1982), and urban subjects: JHW-1 (n=2212, men=1415), JHW-2 (n=1124, men=550) and JHW-3 (n=458, men=226), we evaluated various cardiovascular risk factors. The greatest tobacco consumption was observed among the illiterate and low educational status subjects (nil, 1-5, 6-10, >10 yr of formal education) as compared to more literate in men (JHW-R 60, 51, 46 and 36% respectively; JHW-1 44, 52, 30 and 18% JHW-2 54, 43, 29 and 24%; and JHW-3 50, 27, 25 and 25%) as well as women (Mantel Haenzel test, P for trend <0.05). In the illiterate subjects the odds ratios (OR) and 95 per cent confidence intervals (CI) for smoking or tobacco use as compared to the highest educational groups in rural (men OR 2.68, CI 2.02, 3.57; women OR 3.13, CI 1.22, 8.08) as well as larger urban studies- JHW-1 (men OR 2.47, CI 1.70, 3.60; women OR 13.78, CI 3.35, 56.75) and JHW-2 (men OR 3.81; CI 1.90, 7.66; women OR 13.73, CI 1.84, 102.45) were significantly greater (P<0.01). Smoking significantly correlated with prevalence of coronary heart disease and hypertension. Other recent Indian studies and national surveys report similar associations. Health ethicists argue that good education and health lead to true development in an underprivileged society. We propose that improving educational status, a major social determinant of health, can lead to appropriate health related behaviours and prevent the epidemics of non

  12. Socioeconomic inequalities and changes in oral health behaviors among Brazilian adolescents from 2009 to 2012

    PubMed Central

    Freire, Maria do Carmo Matias; Jordão, Lidia Moraes Ribeiro; Malta, Deborah Carvalho; Andrade, Silvânia Suely Caribé de Araújo; Peres, Marco Aurelio

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE To analyze oral health behaviors changes over time in Brazilian adolescents concerning maternal educational inequalities. METHODS Data from the Pesquisa Nacional de Saúde do Escolar (Brazilian National School Health Survey) were analyzed. The sample was composed of 60,973 and 61,145 students from 26 Brazilian state capitals and the Federal District in 2009 and 2012, respectively. The analyzed factors were oral health behaviors (toothbrushing frequency, sweets consumption, soft drink consumption, and cigarette experimentation) and sociodemographics (age, sex, race, type of school and maternal schooling). Oral health behaviors and sociodemographic factors in the two years were compared (Rao-Scott test) and relative and absolute measures of socioeconomic inequalities in health were estimated (slope index of inequality and relative concentration index), using maternal education as a socioeconomic indicator, expressed in number of years of study (> 11; 9-11; ≤ 8). RESULTS Results from 2012, when compared with those from 2009, for all maternal education categories, showed that the proportion of people with low toothbrushing frequency increased, and that consumption of sweets and soft drinks and cigarette experimentation decreased. In private schools, positive slope index of inequality and relative concentration index indicated higher soft drink consumption in 2012 and higher cigarette experimentation in both years among students who reported greater maternal schooling, with no significant change in inequalities. In public schools, negative slope index of inequality and relative concentration index indicated higher soft drink consumption among students who reported lower maternal schooling in both years, with no significant change overtime. The positive relative concentration index indicated inequality in 2009 for cigarette experimentation, with a higher prevalence among students who reported greater maternal schooling. There were no inequalities for

  13. [Innovating in public health: monitoring of social determinants of health and reduction of health inequities: a priority for Spanish presidency of the European union in 2010].

    PubMed

    Calvete Oliva, Antonio; Campos Esteban, Pilar; Catalán Matamoros, Daniel; Fernández de la Hoz, Karoline; Herrador Ortiz, Zaida; Merino Merino, Begoña; Ramírez Fernández, Rosa; Santaolaya Cesteros, María; Hernández Aguado, Ildefonso

    2010-01-01

    Tackling health inequalities to achieve health equity is currently one of the main challenges for developed and developing countries. Aware of this reality, and knowing how relevant for economic and social growth the inequalities in health are, the Spanish Ministry of Health and Social Policy has established "Innovation in Public Health: monitoring social determinants of health and reduction of health inequalities" as one of the priorities for the Spanish presidency of the European Union in the first semester of 2010. Furthermore, a national strategy to tackle health inequalities is being developed in the current political term. By choosing this priority, the Spanish Ministry of Health an Social Policy aims to contribute to move forward a coherent and effective agenda at both European and national level, in a new world stage more aware of the social and economic expenditure of inequity in health and its repercussions on countries welfare and development.

  14. 2007 SOPHE Presidential Address: Discovering a Philosophy of Health Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gambescia, Stephen F.

    2007-01-01

    While we have several hallmarks of a mature profession, does this include a well-articulated "Philosophy of Health Education?" High-order questions should be important to both practitioners and researchers in health education. This address outlines why it is important for us to have a philosophy of health education, an approach that we could take…

  15. Addressing Safety in Schools: CDC's Division of Adolescent & School Health

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2007

    2007-01-01

    The mission of the Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH) is to prevent the most serious health risks among children, adolescents, and young adults. Its goal is to prevent unintentional injuries and violence by enabling the nation's schools to address safety through coordinated school health programs. It attempts to achieve this goal…

  16. The less healthy urban population: income-related health inequality in China

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Health inequality has been recognized as a problem all over the world. In China, the poor usually have less access to healthcare than the better-off, despite having higher levels of need. Since the proportion of the Chinese population living in urban areas increased tremendously with the urbanization movements, attention has been paid to the association between urban/rural residence and population health. It is important to understand the variation in health across income groups, and in particular to take into account the effects of urban/rural residence on the degree of income-related health inequalities. Methods This paper empirically assesses the magnitude of rural/urban disparities in income-related adult health status, i.e., self-assessed health (SAH) and physical activity limitation, using Concentration Indices. It then uses decomposition methods to unravel the causes of inequalities and their variations across urban and rural populations. Data from the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS) 2006 are used. Results The study finds that the poor are less likely to report their health status as “excellent or good” and are more likely to have physical activity limitation. Such inequality is more pronounced for the urban population than for the rural population. Results from the decomposition analysis suggest that, for the urban population, 76.47 per cent to 79.07 per cent of inequalities are driven by non-demographic/socioeconomic-related factors, among which income, job status and educational level are the most important factors. For the rural population, 48.19 per cent to 77.78 per cent of inequalities are driven by non-demographic factors. Income and educational attainment appear to have a prominent influence on inequality. Conclusion The findings suggest that policy targeting the poor, especially the urban poor, is needed in order to reduce health inequality. PMID:22989200

  17. Individualization and inequalities in health: a qualitative study of class identity and health.

    PubMed

    Bolam, Bruce; Murphy, Simon; Gleeson, Kate

    2004-10-01

    It has been argued that social class, if not dead, is at least a 'zombie category' in contemporary Western society. However, epidemiological evidence shows that class-based inequalities have either persisted or widened, despite overall improvements in the health of Western populations. This article presents an exploratory qualitative study of the individualization of class identity and health conducted in a southern English city. Findings are presented in consideration of two competing argumentative positions around which participants worked to negotiate class identity and health. The first of these positions denied the significance of class for identity and health and was associated with the individualised heroic and stoic narratives of working class identity. The second position acknowledged the reality of class relations and their implications for health and identity, being associated with structurally and politically orientated narratives of middle class identity. In sum, resistance to class was associated with talk about individual, private experience whereas the acceptance of class was linked to discussion of health as a wider social or political phenomenon. This evidence lends qualified support to the individualization thesis: inequalities in health existing on structural or material levels are not simply reproduced, and indeed in some contexts may even juxtapose, accounts of social identity in interview and focus group contexts. Class identity and health are negotiated in lay talk as participants shift argumentatively back and forth between competing positions, and public and private realms, in the attempt to make sense of health and illness. The promotion of greater awareness and interest in health inequalities within wider public discourse may well help support attempts to tackle these injustices. PMID:15246166

  18. Income Inequality and Self-Rated Health Status: Evidence from the European Community Household Panel

    PubMed Central

    HILDEBRAND, VINCENT; VAN KERM, PHILIPPE

    2009-01-01

    We examine the effect of income inequality on individuals’ self-rated health status in a pooled sample of 11 countries, using longitudinal data from the European Community Household Panel survey. Taking advantage of the longitudinal and cross-national nature of our data, and carefully modeling the self-reported health information, we avoid several of the pitfalls suffered by earlier studies on this topic. We calculate income inequality indices measured at two standard levels of geography (NUTS-0 and NUTS-1) and find consistent evidence that income inequality is negatively related to self-rated health status in the European Union for both men and women, particularly when measured at national level. However, despite its statistical significance, the magnitude of the impact of inequality on health is very small. PMID:20084830

  19. Income inequality and self-rated health status: evidence from the European Community Household Panel.

    PubMed

    Hildebrand, Vincent; Van Kerm, Philippe

    2009-11-01

    We examine the effect of income inequality on individuals' self-rated health status in a pooled sample of 11 countries, using longitudinal data from the European Community Household Panel survey. Taking advantage of the longitudinal and cross-national nature of our data, and carefully modeling the self-reported health information, we avoid several of the pitfalls suffered by earlier studies on this topic. We calculate income inequality indices measured at two standard levels of geography (NUTS-0 and NUTS-1) and find consistent evidence that income inequality is negatively related to self-rated health status in the European Union for both men and women, particularly when measured at national level. However, despite its statistical significance, the magnitude of the impact of inequality on health is very small.

  20. Inequality in Japan (1892-1941): physical stature, income, and health.

    PubMed

    Bassino, Jean-Pascal

    2006-01-01

    This paper investigates the relationship between physical stature, per capita income, health, and regional inequality in Japan at the prefecture-level for the period 1892-1941. The analysis shows that inequality in income and access to health services explains differences in average height of the population across the 47 Japanese prefectures during this period and that variation in income contributed to changes in height during the 1930s. Annual regional time series of height indicate that Japan experienced a regional convergence in biological welfare before 1914, and that a divergence occurred during the interwar period; personal inequality followed a similar pattern.

  1. Income inequality and health: lessons from a refugee residential assignment program.

    PubMed

    Grönqvist, Hans; Johansson, Per; Niknami, Susan

    2012-07-01

    This paper examines the effect of income inequality on health for a group of particularly disadvantaged individuals: refugees. Our analysis draws on longitudinal hospitalization records coupled with a settlement policy where Swedish authorities assigned newly arrived refugees to their first area of residence. The policy was implemented in a way that provides a source of plausibly random variation in initial location. The results reveal no statistically significant effect of income inequality on the risk of being hospitalized. This finding holds also for most population subgroups and when separating between different types of diagnoses. Our estimates are precise enough to rule out large effects of income inequality on health.

  2. Addressing the social determinants of health through the Alameda County, California, place matters policy initiative.

    PubMed

    Schaff, Katherine; Desautels, Alexandra; Flournoy, Rebecca; Carson, Keith; Drenick, Teresa; Fujii, Darlene; Lee, Anna; Luginbuhl, Jessica; Mena, Mona; Shrago, Amy; Siegel, Anita; Stahl, Robert; Watkins-Tartt, Kimi; Willow, Pam; Witt, Sandra; Woloshin, Diane; Yamashita, Brenda

    2013-11-01

    In Alameda County, California, significant health inequities by race/ethnicity, income, and place persist. Many of the county's low-income residents and residents of color live in communities that have faced historical and current disinvestment through public policies. This disinvestment affects community conditions such as access to economic opportunities, well-maintained and affordable housing, high-quality schools, healthy food, safe parks, and clean water and air. These community conditions greatly affect health. At the invitation of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies' national Place Matters initiative, Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson's Office and the Alameda County Public Health Department launched Alameda County Place Matters, an initiative that addresses community conditions through local policy change. We describe the initiative's creation, activities, policy successes, and best practices.

  3. Addressing the Social Determinants of Health through the Alameda County, California, Place Matters Policy Initiative

    PubMed Central

    Schaff, Katherine; Flournoy, Rebecca; Carson, Keith; Drenick, Teresa; Fujii, Darlene; Lee, Anna; Luginbuhl, Jessica; Mena, Mona; Shrago, Amy; Siegel, Anita; Stahl, Robert; Watkins-Tartt, Kimi; Willow, Pam; Witt, Sandra; Woloshin, Diane; Yamashita, Brenda

    2013-01-01

    In Alameda County, California, significant health inequities by race/ethnicity, income, and place persist. Many of the county's low-income residents and residents of color live in communities that have faced historical and current disinvestment through public policies. This disinvestment affects community conditions such as access to economic opportunities, well-maintained and affordable housing, high-quality schools, healthy food, safe parks, and clean water and air. These community conditions greatly affect health. At the invitation of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies' national Place Matters initiative, Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson's Office and the Alameda County Public Health Department launched Alameda County Place Matters, an initiative that addresses community conditions through local policy change. We describe the initiative's creation, activities, policy successes, and best practices. PMID:24179279

  4. Health Inequity in People with Intellectual Disabilities: From Evidence to Action Applying an Appreciative Inquiry Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naaldenberg, Jenneken; Banks, Roger; Lennox, Nick; Ouellette-Kunz, Hélène; Meijer, Marijke; Lantman-de Valk, Henny van Schrojenstein

    2015-01-01

    Background: The current understanding of health inequities in people with intellectual disabilities does not readily translate into improvements in health status or health care. To identify opportunities for action, the 2013 IASSIDD health SIRG conference organized ten intensive workshops. Materials and methods: The workshops each addressed…

  5. The cost of child health inequalities in Aotearoa New Zealand: a preliminary scoping study

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Health inequalities have been extensively documented, internationally and in New Zealand. The cost of reducing health inequities is often perceived as high; however, recent international studies suggest the cost of “doing nothing” is itself significant. This study aimed to develop a preliminary estimate of the economic cost of health inequities between Māori (indigenous) and non-Māori children in New Zealand. Methods Standard quantitative epidemiological methods and “cost of illness” methodology were employed, within a Kaupapa Māori theoretical framework. Data were obtained from national data collections held by the New Zealand Health Information Service and other health sector agencies. Results Preliminary estimates suggest child health inequities between Māori and non-Māori in New Zealand are cost-saving to the health sector. However the societal costs are significant. A conservative “base case” scenario estimate is over $NZ62 million per year, while alternative costing methods yield larger costs of nearly $NZ200 million per annum. The total cost estimate is highly sensitive to the costing method used and Value of Statistical Life applied, as the cost of potentially avoidable deaths of Māori children is the major contributor to this estimate. Conclusions This preliminary study suggests that health sector spending is skewed towards non-Māori children despite evidence of greater Māori need. Persistent child health inequities result in significant societal economic costs. Eliminating child health inequities, particularly in primary care access, could result in significant economic benefits for New Zealand. However, there are conceptual, ethical and methodological challenges in estimating the economic cost of child health inequities. Re-thinking of traditional economic frameworks and development of more appropriate methodologies is required. PMID:22640030

  6. On the measurement of relative and absolute income-related health inequality.

    PubMed

    Clarke, Philip M; Gerdtham, Ulf-G; Johannesson, Magnus; Bingefors, Kerstin; Smith, Len

    2002-12-01

    In recent work on international comparisons of income-related inequalities in health, the concentration index has been used as a measure of health inequality. A drawback of this measure is that it is sensitive to whether it is estimated with respect to health or morbidity. An alternative would be to use the generalized concentration index that is based on absolute rather than relative health differences. In this methodological paper, we explore the importance of the choice of health inequality measure by comparing the income-related inequality in health status and morbidity between Sweden and Australia. This involves estimating a concentration index and a generalized concentration index for the eight-scale health profile of the Short Form 36 (SF-36) health survey. We then transform the scores for each scale into a measure of morbidity and show that whether the concentration index is estimated with respect to health or morbidity has an impact on the results. The ranking between the two countries is reversed for two of the eight dimensions of SF-36 and within both countries the ranking across the eight SF-36 scales is also affected. However, this change in ranking does not occur when the generalized concentration index is compared and we conclude with the implications of these results for reporting comparisons of income-related health inequality in different populations.

  7. Communication Inequalities and Public Health Implications of Adult Social Networking Site Use in the United States

    PubMed Central

    Kontos, Emily Z.; Emmons, Karen M.; Puleo, Elaine; Viswanath, K.

    2011-01-01

    Background Social media, and specifically social networking sites (SNS), are emerging as an important platform for communication and health information exchange. Yet, despite the increase in popularity and use, only a limited number of empirical studies document which segments of the adult population are and are not using social networking sites and with what, if any, affect on health. Methods The purpose of this study is to identify potential communication inequalities in social networking site use among a representative sample of US adults and to examine the association between SNS-use and psychological well-being. We analyzed data from the National Cancer Institute’s 2007 Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS). Results Thirty-five percent of online adults reported SNS-use within the past 12 months, and; there were no significant differences in SNS-use by race/ethnicity or socio-economic position. Younger age (p=.00) was the most significant predictor of SNS-use while being married (p=.02) and having a history of cancer (p=.02) were associated with a decreased odds of SNS-use. Social networking site use was significantly associated with a 0.80 (p=.00) increment in psychological distress score after controlling for other factors. Conclusion The absence of inequalities in adult SNS-use across race/ethnicity and class offers some support for the continued use of social media to promote public health efforts; however, issues such as the persisting Digital Divide and potential deleterious effects of SNS-use on psychological well-being need to be addressed. PMID:21154095

  8. Communication inequalities and public health implications of adult social networking site use in the United States.

    PubMed

    Kontos, Emily Z; Emmons, Karen M; Puleo, Elaine; Viswanath, K

    2010-01-01

    Social media, and specifically social networking sites (SNSs), are emerging as an important platform for communication and health information exchange. Yet, despite the increase in popularity and use, only a limited number of empirical studies document which segments of the adult population are and are not using social networking sites and with what, if any, affect on health. The purpose of this study is to identify potential communication inequalities in social networking site use among a representative sample of U.S. adults and to examine the association between SNS use and psychological well-being. We analyzed data from the National Cancer Institute's 2007 Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS). Thirty-five percent of online adults reported SNS use within the past 12 months, and there were no significant differences in SNS use by race/ethnicity or socioeconomic position. Younger age (p = .00) was the most significant predictor of SNS use, while being married (p = .02) and having a history of cancer (p = .02) were associated with a decreased odds of SNS use. SNS use was significantly associated with a 0.80 (p = .00) increment in psychological distress score after controlling for other factors. The absence of inequalities in adult SNS use across race/ethnicity and class offers some support for the continued use of social media to promote public health efforts; however, issues such as the persisting digital divide and potential deleterious effects of SNS use on psychological well-being need to be addressed. PMID:21154095

  9. The Dynamics of Income-related Health Inequality among US Children

    PubMed Central

    Chatterji, Pinka; Lahiri, Kajal; Song, Jingya

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY We estimate and decompose income-related inequality in child health in the US and analyze its dynamics using the income-related health mobility index recently introduced by Allanson et al., 2010. Data come from the 1997, 2002, and 2007 waves of the Child Development Supplement (CDS) of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID). The findings show that income-related child health inequality remains stable as children grow up and enter adolescence. The main factor underlying income-related child health inequality is income itself, although other factors, such as maternal education, also play a role. Decomposition of income-related health mobility indicates that health changes over time are more favorable to children with lower initial family incomes vs. children with higher initial family incomes. However, offsetting this effect, our findings also suggest that changes in income ranking over time are positively related to children’s subsequent health status. PMID:22514158

  10. The dynamics of income-related health inequality among American children.

    PubMed

    Chatterji, Pinka; Lahiri, Kajal; Song, Jingya

    2013-05-01

    We estimate and decompose income-related inequality in child health in the USA and analyze its dynamics using the recently introduced health mobility index. Data come from the 1997, 2002, and 2007 waves of the Child Development Supplement of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. The findings show that income-related child health inequality remains stable as children grow up and enter adolescence. The main factor underlying income-related child health inequality is income itself, although other factors, such as maternal education, also play a role. Decomposition of income-related health mobility indicates that health changes over time are more favorable to children with lower initial family incomes versus children with higher initial family incomes. However, offsetting this effect, our findings also suggest that changes in income ranking over time are positively related to children's subsequent health status.

  11. Addressing the social determinants of inequities in physical activity and sedentary behaviours.

    PubMed

    Ball, Kylie; Carver, Alison; Downing, Katherine; Jackson, Michelle; O'Rourke, Kerryn

    2015-09-01

    Participation in both physical activity and sedentary behaviours follow a social gradient, such that those who are more advantaged are more likely to be regularly physically active, less likely to be sedentary, and less likely to experience the adverse health outcomes associated with inactive lifestyles than their less advantaged peers. The aim of this paper is to provide, in a format that will support policymakers and practitioners, an overview of the current evidence base and highlight promising approaches for promoting physical activity and reducing sedentary behaviours equitably at each level of 'Fair Foundations: The VicHealth framework for health equity'. A rapid review was undertaken in February-April 2014. Electronic databases (Medline, PsychINFO, SportsDISCUS, CINAHL, Scopus, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, Global Health and Embase) were searched using a pre-defined search strategy and grey literature searches of websites of key relevant organizations were undertaken. The majority of included studies focussed on approaches targeting behaviour change at the individual level, with fewer focussing on daily living conditions or broader socioeconomic, political and cultural contexts. While many gaps in the evidence base remain, particularly in relation to reducing sedentary behaviour, promising approaches for promoting physical activity equitably across the three levels of the Fair Foundations framework include: community-wide approaches; support for local and state governments to develop policies and practices; neighbourhood designs (including parks) that are conducive to physical activity; investment in early childhood interventions; school programmes; peer- or group-based programmes; and targeted motivational, cognitive-behavioural, and/or mediated individual-level approaches. PMID:25855784

  12. Epi + demos + cracy: linking political systems and priorities to the magnitude of health inequities--evidence, gaps, and a research agenda.

    PubMed

    Beckfield, Jason; Krieger, Nancy

    2009-01-01

    A new focus within both social epidemiology and political sociology investigates how political systems and priorities shape health inequities. To advance-and better integrate-research on political determinants of health inequities, the authors conducted a systematic search of the ISI Web of Knowledge and PubMed databases and identified 45 studies, commencing in 1992, that explicitly and empirically tested, in relation to an a priori political hypothesis, for either 1) changes in the magnitude of health inequities or 2) significant cross-national differences in the magnitude of health inequities. Overall, 84% of the studies focused on the global North, and all clustered around 4 political factors: 1) the transition to a capitalist economy; 2) neoliberal restructuring; 3) welfare states; and 4) political incorporation of subordinated racial/ethnic, indigenous, and gender groups. The evidence suggested that the first 2 factors probably increase health inequities, the third is inconsistently related, and the fourth helps reduce them. In this review, the authors critically summarize these studies' findings, consider methodological limitations, and propose a research agenda-with careful attention to spatiotemporal scale, level, time frame (e.g., life course, historical generation), choice of health outcomes, inclusion of polities, and specification of political mechanisms-to address the enormous gaps in knowledge that were identified.

  13. What is the relationship between income inequality and health? Evidence from the BHPS.

    PubMed

    Lorgelly, Paula K; Lindley, Joanne

    2008-02-01

    Income inequality hypotheses propose that income differentials and/or income distributions have a detrimental effect on health. This previously well accepted relationship between inequality and health has recently come under scrutiny; some claim that it is a statistical artefact, arguing that aggregate level data are not sophisticated enough to adequately test for (and discriminate between) their existence. Supporters argue that it is a question of estimating the relationship using, amongst other things, an appropriate geographical scale. This paper adds to the debate by estimating the relationship between income inequality and health using individual panel data, exploring the relationship at the regional as well as the national level, while attempting to discriminate between the competing hypotheses. Pooled, random and fixed effects ordered probit models are exploited to estimate the relationship between self-reported health and household income, income inequality and relative income. While the estimating regressions find support for the absolute income hypothesis, there is no support for the income inequality hypothesis or relative income hypothesis, and as such we argue that there is limited evidence of an effect of income inequality on health within Britain.

  14. Income inequality, mortality, and self rated health: meta-analysis of multilevel studies

    PubMed Central

    Sembajwe, Grace; Kawachi, Ichiro; van Dam, Rob M; Subramanian, S V; Yamagata, Zentaro

    2009-01-01

    Objective To provide quantitative evaluations on the association between income inequality and health. Design Random effects meta-analyses, calculating the overall relative risk for subsequent mortality among prospective cohort studies and the overall odds ratio for poor self rated health among cross sectional studies. Data sources PubMed, the ISI Web of Science, and the National Bureau for Economic Research database. Review methods Peer reviewed papers with multilevel data. Results The meta-analysis included 59 509 857 subjects in nine cohort studies and 1 280 211 subjects in 19 cross sectional studies. The overall cohort relative risk and cross sectional odds ratio (95% confidence intervals) per 0.05 unit increase in Gini coefficient, a measure of income inequality, was 1.08 (1.06 to 1.10) and 1.04 (1.02 to 1.06), respectively. Meta-regressions showed stronger associations between income inequality and the health outcomes among studies with higher Gini (≥0.3), conducted with data after 1990, with longer duration of follow-up (>7 years), and incorporating time lags between income inequality and outcomes. By contrast, analyses accounting for unmeasured regional characteristics showed a weaker association between income inequality and health. Conclusions The results suggest a modest adverse effect of income inequality on health, although the population impact might be larger if the association is truly causal. The results also support the threshold effect hypothesis, which posits the existence of a threshold of income inequality beyond which adverse impacts on health begin to emerge. The findings need to be interpreted with caution given the heterogeneity between studies, as well as the attenuation of the risk estimates in analyses that attempted to control for the unmeasured characteristics of areas with high levels of income inequality. PMID:19903981

  15. Understanding the Research–Policy Divide for Oral Health Inequality

    PubMed Central

    Bell, Erica; Crocombe, Leonard; Campbell, Steven; Goldberg, Lynette R.; Seidel, Bastian M.

    2014-01-01

    Background: No studies exist of the congruence of research in oral health to policy. This study aimed to examine the broad congruence of oral health research to policy, and implications for developing oral health research that is more policy relevant, particularly for the wider challenge of addressing unequal oral health outcomes, rather than specific policy translation issues. Methods: Bayesian-based software was used in a multi-layered method to compare the conceptual content of 127,193 oral health research abstracts published between 2000–2012 with eight current oral health policy documents from Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development countries. Findings: Fifty-five concepts defined the research abstracts, of which only eight were policy-relevant, and six of which were minor research concepts. Conclusions The degree of disconnection between clinical concepts and healthcare system and workforce development concepts was striking. This study shows that, far from being “lost in translation,” oral health research and policy are so different as to raise doubts about the extent to which research is policy-relevant and policy is research-based. The notion of policy relevance encompasses the lack of willingness of policy makers to embrace research, and the need for researchers to develop research that is, and is seen to be, policy-relevant. PMID:25617516

  16. Will Universal Health Coverage (UHC) lead to the freedom to lead flourishing and healthy lives?: Comment on "Inequities in the freedom to lead a flourishing and healthy life: issues for healthy public policy".

    PubMed

    Matheson, Don

    2015-01-01

    The focus on public policy and health equity is discussed in reference to the current global health policy discussion on Universal Health Coverage (UHC). This initiative has strong commitment from the leadership of the international organizations involved, but a lack of policy clarity outside of the health financing component may limit the initiative's impact on health inequity. In order to address health inequities there needs to be greater focus on the most vulnerable communities, subnational health systems, and attention paid to how communities, civil society and the private sector engage and participate in health systems. PMID:25584354

  17. Income inequality, drug-related arrests, and the health of people who inject drugs: Reflections on seventeen years of research.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Samuel R; Tempalski, Barbara; Brady, Joanne E; West, Brooke S; Pouget, Enrique R; Williams, Leslie D; Des Jarlais, Don C; Cooper, Hannah L F

    2016-06-01

    This paper reviews and then discusses selected findings from a seventeen year study about the population prevalence of people who inject drugs (PWID) and of HIV prevalence and mortality among PWID in 96 large US metropolitan areas. Unlike most research, this study was conducted with the metropolitan area as the level of analysis. It found that metropolitan area measures of income inequality and of structural racism predicted all of these outcomes, and that rates of arrest for heroin and/or cocaine predicted HIV prevalence and mortality but did not predict changes in PWID population prevalence. Income inequality and measures of structural racism were associated with hard drug arrests or other properties of policing. These findings, whose limitations and implications for further research are discussed, suggest that efforts to respond to HIV and to drug injection should include supra-individual efforts to reduce both income inequality and racism. At a time when major social movements in many countries are trying to reduce inequality, racism and oppression (including reforming drug laws), these macro-social issues in public health should be both addressable and a priority in both research and action.

  18. Income inequality, drug-related arrests, and the health of people who inject drugs: Reflections on seventeen years of research.

    PubMed

    Friedman, Samuel R; Tempalski, Barbara; Brady, Joanne E; West, Brooke S; Pouget, Enrique R; Williams, Leslie D; Des Jarlais, Don C; Cooper, Hannah L F

    2016-06-01

    This paper reviews and then discusses selected findings from a seventeen year study about the population prevalence of people who inject drugs (PWID) and of HIV prevalence and mortality among PWID in 96 large US metropolitan areas. Unlike most research, this study was conducted with the metropolitan area as the level of analysis. It found that metropolitan area measures of income inequality and of structural racism predicted all of these outcomes, and that rates of arrest for heroin and/or cocaine predicted HIV prevalence and mortality but did not predict changes in PWID population prevalence. Income inequality and measures of structural racism were associated with hard drug arrests or other properties of policing. These findings, whose limitations and implications for further research are discussed, suggest that efforts to respond to HIV and to drug injection should include supra-individual efforts to reduce both income inequality and racism. At a time when major social movements in many countries are trying to reduce inequality, racism and oppression (including reforming drug laws), these macro-social issues in public health should be both addressable and a priority in both research and action. PMID:27198555

  19. Province-Level Income Inequality and Health Outcomes in Canadian Adolescents

    PubMed Central

    McGrath, Jennifer J.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To examine the effects of provincial income inequality (disparity between rich and poor), independent of provincial income and family socioeconomic status, on multiple adolescent health outcomes. Methods Participants (aged 12–17 years; N = 11,899) were from the Canadian National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth. Parental education, household income, province income inequality, and province mean income were measured. Health outcomes were measured across a number of domains, including self-rated health, mental health, health behaviors, substance use behaviors, and physical health. Results Income inequality was associated with injuries, general physical symptoms, and limiting conditions, but not associated with most adolescent health outcomes and behaviors. Income inequality had a moderating effect on family socioeconomic status for limiting conditions, hyperactivity/inattention, and conduct problems, but not for other outcomes. Conclusions Province-level income inequality was associated with some physical and mental health outcomes in adolescents, which has research and policy implications for this age-group. PMID:25324533

  20. Accounting for the dead in the longitudinal analysis of income-related health inequalities

    PubMed Central

    Petrie, Dennis; Allanson, Paul; Gerdtham, Ulf-G.

    2011-01-01

    This paper develops an accounting framework to consider the effect of deaths on the longitudinal analysis of income-related health inequalities. Ignoring deaths or using Inverse Probability Weights (IPWs) to re-weight the sample for mortality-related attrition can produce misleading results. Incorporating deaths into the longitudinal analysis of income-related health inequalities provides a more complete picture in terms of the evaluation of health changes in respect to socioeconomic status. We illustrate our work by investigating health mobility from 1999 till 2004 using the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS). We show that for Scottish males explicitly accounting for the dead rather than using IPWs to account for mortality-related attrition changes the direction of the relationship between relative health changes and initial income position, from negative to positive, while for other groups it significantly increases the strength of the positive relationship. Incorporating the dead may be vital in the longitudinal analysis of health inequalities. PMID:21820193

  1. Further examination of the cross-country association between income inequality and population health.

    PubMed

    Ram, Rati

    2006-02-01

    Several scholars have put forward the view that the estimates by Rodgers [(1979). Income and inequality as determinants of mortality: An international cross-section analysis. Population Studies, 33 (2), 343-351], Flegg [(1982). Inequality of income, illiteracy and medical care as determinants of infant mortality in underdeveloped countries. Population Studies, 36 (3), 441-458] and Waldmann [(1992). Income distribution and infant mortality. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 107 (4), 1283-1302] showing a negative cross-country association between income inequality and population health, cannot be replicated from recent data. In view of the importance of this matter, the present study further examines the issue from the most recent, and probably more accurate, data for the largest cross-country sample used in this line of research. The main conclusion is that the negative cross-country association between income inequality and good health, reported by Rodgers, Flegg, and Waldmann, is replicated very well. The different findings indicated by some scholars may have been due to their samples or the models being unusual. Therefore, the recent skepticism about the existence of such a negative association needs to be reconsidered. Several additional points are also noted. First, income inequality shows significance even after an index of ethnic heterogeneity is included. Second, ethnic heterogeneity itself has a negative association with population health. Third, income inequality retains significance in the presence of a measure of social capital. Fourth, however, the association between the measure of social capital and population health appears weak. Fifth, a simple analysis does not support the view that the positive association between income inequality and infant mortality in less developed countries (LDCs) may just be a reflection of the role of poverty. Finally, there is some support for the proposition that while income may be relatively more important for health in

  2. Reducing Health Inequalities in Scotland: The Involvement of People with Learning Disabilities as National Health Service Reviewers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Martin; Martin, Mike

    2010-01-01

    Reducing health inequalities is a key priority for the Scottish Government. Health authorities are expected to meet quality targets. The involvement of people with learning disabilities in health service review teams has been one of the initiatives used in by National Health Service Quality Improvement Scotland to empower patients and improve…

  3. The Association Between Income Inequality and Oral Health in Canada: A Cross-Sectional Study.

    PubMed

    Moeller, Jamie; Quiñonez, Carlos

    2016-10-01

    Societies exhibiting higher levels of economic inequality experience poorer health outcomes, and the proposed pathways used to explain these patterns are also relevant to oral health. This study therefore examines the relationship between the level of income inequality and the oral health and dental care services utilization of residents from eleven Canadian metropolitan areas. We calculated Pearson correlation coefficients (r) between each metropolitan area's Gini coefficient (used as a proxy for income inequality, calculated from 2006 Canadian census data) and each area's experience of dental pain, self-reported oral health, and use of dental care services (provided by data from the 2003 Canadian Community Health Survey). Greater levels of income inequality in the selected metropolitan areas were related to an increased likelihood of residents self-reporting their oral health as poor/fair and reporting a prolonged absence from visiting a dentist. There was, however, no relationship between the level of income inequality and the likelihood of respondents reporting a recent toothache, tooth sensitivity, or jaw pain. Policies designed to improve the oral health of the population, and Canadians' access to dental care generally, may therefore work best when supported by policies that promote greater economic equality within Canada.

  4. Comparison and Relative Utility of Inequality Measurements: As Applied to Scotland’s Child Dental Health

    PubMed Central

    Blair, Yvonne I.; McMahon, Alex D.; Macpherson, Lorna M. D.

    2013-01-01

    This study compared and assessed the utility of tests of inequality on a series of very large population caries datasets. National cross-sectional caries datasets for Scotland’s 5-year-olds in 1993/94 (n = 5,078); 1995/96 (n = 6,240); 1997/98 (n = 6,584); 1999/00 (n = 6,781); 2002/03 (n = 9,747); 2003/04 (n = 10,956); 2005/06 (n = 10,945) and 2007/08 (n = 12,067) were obtained. Outcomes were based on the d3mft metric (i.e. the number of decayed, missing and filled teeth). An area-based deprivation category (DepCat) measured the subjects’ socioeconomic status (SES). Simple absolute and relative inequality, Odds Ratios and the Significant Caries Index (SIC) as advocated by the World Health Organization were calculated. The measures of complex inequality applied to data were: the Slope Index of Inequality (absolute) and a variety of relative inequality tests i.e. Gini coefficient; Relative Index of Inequality; concentration curve; Koolman & Doorslaer’s transformed Concentration Index; Receiver Operator Curve and Population Attributable Risk (PAR). Additional tests used were plots of SIC deciles (SIC10) and a Scottish Caries Inequality Metric (SCIM10). Over the period, mean d3mft improved from 3.1(95%CI 3.0–3.2) to 1.9(95%CI 1.8–1.9) and d3mft = 0% from 41.1(95%CI 39.8–42.3) to 58.3(95%CI 57.8–59.7). Absolute simple and complex inequality decreased. Relative simple and complex inequality remained comparatively stable. Our results support the use of the SII and RII to measure complex absolute and relative SES inequalities alongside additional tests of complex relative inequality such as PAR and Koolman and Doorslaer’s transformed CI. The latter two have clear interpretations which may influence policy makers. Specialised dental metrics (i.e. SIC, SIC10 and SCIM10) permit the exploration of other important inequalities not determined by SES, and could be applied to many other types of disease where ranking of morbidity

  5. Decomposition of sources of income-related health inequality applied on SF-36 summary scores: a Danish health survey

    PubMed Central

    Gundgaard, Jens; Lauridsen, Jørgen

    2006-01-01

    Background If the SF-36 summary scores are used as health status measures for the purpose of measuring health inequality it is relevant to be informed about the sources of the inequality in order to be able to target the specific aspects of health with the largest impact. Methods Data were from a Danish health survey on health status, health behaviour and socio-economic background. Decompositions of concentration indices were carried out to examine the sources of income-related inequality in physical and mental health, using the physical and mental health summary scores from SF-36. Results The analyses show how the different subscales from SF-36 and various explanatory variables contribute to overall inequality in physical and mental health. The decompositions contribute with information about the importance of the different aspects of health and off-setting effects that would otherwise be missed in the aggregate summary scores. However, the complicated scoring mechanism of the summary scores with negative coefficients makes it difficult to interpret the contributions and to draw policy implications. Conclusion Decomposition techniques provide insights to how subscales contribute to income-related inequality when SF-36 summary scores are used. PMID:16925801

  6. Income inequality and self-rated health in US metropolitan areas: a multi-level analysis.

    PubMed

    Lopez, Russ

    2004-12-01

    Income inequality has been found to affect health in a number of international and cross-national studies. Using data from a telephone survey of adults in the United States, this study analyzed the effect of metropolitan level income inequality on self-rated health. It combined individual data from the 2000 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System with metropolitan level income data from the 2000 Census. After controlling for smoking, age, education, Black race, Hispanic ethnicity, sex, household income, and metropolitan area per capita income, this study found that for each 1 point rise in the GINI index (on a hundred point scale) the risk of reporting Fair or Poor self-rated health increased by 4.0% (95% confidence interval 1.6-6.5%). Given that self-rated health is a good predictor of morbidity and mortality, this suggests that metropolitan area income inequality is affecting the health of US adults.

  7. Descriptive analysis of the inequalities of health information resources between Alberta's rural and urban health regions.

    PubMed

    Stieda, Vivian; Colvin, Barb

    2009-01-01

    In an effort to understand the extent of the inequalities in health information resources across Alberta, SEARCH Custom, HKN (Health Knowledge Network) and IRREN (Inter-Regional Research and Evaluation Network) conducted a survey in December 2007 to determine what library resources currently existed in Alberta's seven rural health regions and the two urban health regions. Although anecdotal evidence indicated that these gaps existed, the analysis was undertaken to provide empirical evidence of the exact nature of these gaps. The results, coupled with the published literature on the impact, effectiveness and value of information on clinical practice and administrative decisions in healthcare management, will be used to build momentum among relevant stakeholders to support a vision of equitably funded health information for all healthcare practitioners across the province of Alberta.

  8. Metabolic syndrome related health inequalities in Korean elderly: Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHAES).

    PubMed

    Kim, Hak-Seon

    2014-11-19

    While the prevalence of metabolic syndrome is increasing, little is presently known about this syndrome in Korean elderly. This study aimed to group metabolic risk factors and to examine the associations between groups of health living conditions and metabolic syndrome using data from the Korean National Health Examination and Nutritional Assessment (KNHANES). A total of 1,435 subjects aged over 65 years old with both biochemical and dietary data information were obtained from the 4th and 5th KNHANES (2007-2012). Using stratified and multistage probability sample data, five components of metabolic syndrome were adopted to identify health inequalities. Our findings show that groups of health living conditions such as dietary pattern, body image, muscle mass, and fat mass were differentially associated with metabolic syndrome risk factors. Future studies are necessary to examine the underlying mechanisms of individual health living conditions to better understand the role of metabolic risk factors in metabolic syndrome in elderly.

  9. Health-income inequality: the effects of the Icelandic economic collapse

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Health-income inequality has been the focus of many studies. The relationship between economic conditions and health has also been widely studied. However, not much is known about how changes in aggregate economic conditions relate to health-income inequality. Nevertheless, such knowledge would have both scientific and practical value as substantial public expenditures are used to decrease such inequalities and opportunities to do so may differ over the business cycle. For this reason we examine the effect of the Icelandic economic collapse in 2008 on health-income inequality. Methods The data used come from a health and lifestyle survey carried out by the Public Health Institute of Iceland in 2007 and 2009. A stratified random sample of 9,807 individuals 18–79 years old received questionnaires and a total of 42.1% answered in both years. As measures of health-income inequality, health-income concentration indices are calculated and decomposed into individual-level determinants. Self-assessed health is used as the health measure in the analyses, but three different measures of income are used: individual income, household income, and equivalized household income. Results In both years there is evidence of health-income inequality favoring the better off. However, changes are apparent between years. For males health-income inequality increases after the crisis while it remains fairly stable for females or slightly decreases. The decomposition analyses show that income itself and disability constitute the most substantial determinants of inequality. The largest increases in contributions between years for males come from being a student, having low education and being obese, as well as age and income but those changes are sensitive to the income measure used. Conclusions Changes in health and income over the business cycle can differ across socioeconomic strata, resulting in cyclicality of income-related health distributions. As substantial fiscal

  10. Lies, Damned Lies, and Health Inequality Measurements: Understanding the Value Judgments.

    PubMed

    Kjellsson, Gustav; Gerdtham, Ulf-G; Petrie, Dennis

    2015-09-01

    Measuring and monitoring socioeconomic health inequalities are critical for understanding the impact of policy decisions. However, the measurement of health inequality is far from value neutral, and one can easily present the measure that best supports one's chosen conclusion or selectively exclude measures. Improving people's understanding of the often implicit value judgments is therefore important to reduce the risk that researchers mislead or policymakers are misled. While the choice between relative and absolute inequality is already value laden, further complexities arise when, as is often the case, health variables have both a lower and upper bound, and thus can be expressed in terms of either attainments or shortfalls, such as for mortality/survival.We bring together the recent parallel discussions from epidemiology and health economics regarding health inequality measurement and provide a deeper understanding of the different value judgments within absolute and relative measures expressed both in attainments and shortfalls, by graphically illustrating both hypothetical and real examples. We show that relative measures in terms of attainments and shortfalls have distinct value judgments, highlighting that for health variables with two bounds the choice is no longer only between an absolute and a relative measure but between an absolute, an attainment- relative and a shortfall-relative one. We illustrate how these three value judgments can be combined onto a single graph which shows the rankings according to all three measures, and illustrates how the three measures provide ethical benchmarks against which to judge the difference in inequality between populations.

  11. Global variations in health: evaluating Wilkinson's income inequality hypothesis using the World Values Survey.

    PubMed

    Jen, Min Hua; Jones, Kelvyn; Johnston, Ron

    2009-02-01

    This international comparative study analyses individual-level data derived from the World Values Survey to evaluate Wilkinson's [(1996). Unhealthy societies: The afflictions of inequality. London: Routledge; (1998). Mortality and distribution of income. Low relative income affects mortality [letter; comment]. British Medical Journal, 316, 1611-1612] income inequality hypothesis regarding variations in health status. Random-coefficient, multilevel modelling provides a direct test of Wilkinson's hypothesis using micro-data on individuals and macro-data on income inequalities analysed simultaneously. This overcomes the ecological fallacy that has troubled previous research into links between individual self-rated health, individual income, country income and income inequality data. Logic regression analysis reveals that there are substantial differences between countries in self-rated health after taking account of age and gender, and individual income has a clear effect in that poorer people report experiencing worse health. The Wilkinson hypothesis is not supported, however, since there is no significant relationship between health and income inequality when individual factors are taken into account. Substantial differences between countries remain even after taking account of micro- and macro-variables; in particular the former communist countries report high levels of poor health.

  12. Seeking out ‘easy targets’? Tobacco companies, health inequalities and public policy

    PubMed Central

    Clifford, David; Hill, Sarah; Collin, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    Introduction The prominence of socioeconomic and ethnic disparities in tobacco use has led to increased policy attention on smoking inequalities in many countries. In 2008 the UK Department of Health held a consultation on the future of tobacco control, including a focus on reducing socioeconomic inequalities in smoking, to which tobacco companies made written submissions. These organisations have historically opposed regulation, favouring a depiction of smoking that emphasises individual choice and downplays broader influences such as industry activities. Methods We undertook thematic analysis of submissions from tobacco manufacturers and allied organisations, with particular focus on industry engagement with health inequalities. Results Alongside well-established arguments (including defence of individual liberty and challenges to scientific evidence), industry actors adopted and misrepresented the language of health inequalities and the social determinants of health in order to oppose specific tobacco control interventions including tobacco taxation, denormalisation of smoking and cessation support. While industry submissions generally opposed state regulation of the tobacco market, tobacco companies argued for increased government investment in harm reduction products and in countering illicit trade. Conclusions Tobacco companies co-opted and misrepresented a social determinants model of health to argue against government regulation of the tobacco market. By drawing on this model, tobacco companies are misappropriating a powerful public health discourse in an attempt to create a false dichotomy between reducing inequalities and regulating of the tobacco market. Such tactics highlight the need for ongoing monitoring of industry attempts to undermine tobacco control policy, particularly with reference to harm reduction. PMID:23832052

  13. The global impact of income inequality on health by age: an observational study

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Richard; Pearce, Jamie

    2007-01-01

    Objectives To explore whether the apparent impact of income inequality on health, which has been shown for wealthier nations, is replicated worldwide, and whether the impact varies by age. Design Observational study. Setting 126 countries of the world for which complete data on income inequality and mortality by age and sex were available around the year 2002 (including 94.4% of world human population). Data sources Data on mortality were from the World Health Organization and income data were taken from the annual reports of the United Nations Development Programme. Main outcome measures Mortality in 5-year age bands for each sex by income inequality and income level. Results At ages 15-29 and 25-39 variations in income inequality seem more closely correlated with mortality worldwide than do variations in material wealth. This relation is especially strong among the poorest countries in Africa. Mortality is higher for a given level of overall income in more unequal nations. Conclusions Income inequality seems to have an influence worldwide, especially for younger adults. Social inequality seems to have a universal negative impact on health. PMID:17954512

  14. Oral Health Inequalities between Rural and Urban Populations of the African and Middle East Region.

    PubMed

    Ogunbodede, E O; Kida, I A; Madjapa, H S; Amedari, M; Ehizele, A; Mutave, R; Sodipo, B; Temilola, S; Okoye, L

    2015-07-01

    Although there have been major improvements in oral health, with remarkable advances in the prevention and management of oral diseases, globally, inequalities persist between urban and rural communities. These inequalities exist in the distribution of oral health services, accessibility, utilization, treatment outcomes, oral health knowledge and practices, health insurance coverage, oral health-related quality of life, and prevalence of oral diseases, among others. People living in rural areas are likely to be poorer, be less health literate, have more caries, have fewer teeth, have no health insurance coverage, and have less money to spend on dental care than persons living in urban areas. Rural areas are often associated with lower education levels, which in turn have been found to be related to lower levels of health literacy and poor use of health care services. These factors have an impact on oral health care, service delivery, and research. Hence, unmet dental care remains one of the most urgent health care needs in these communities. We highlight some of the conceptual issues relating to urban-rural inequalities in oral health, especially in the African and Middle East Region (AMER). Actions to reduce oral health inequalities and ameliorate rural-urban disparity are necessary both within the health sector and the wider policy environment. Recommended actions include population-specific oral health promotion programs, measures aimed at increasing access to oral health services in rural areas, integration of oral health into existing primary health care services, and support for research aimed at informing policy on the social determinants of health. Concerted efforts must be made by all stakeholders (governments, health care workforce, organizations, and communities) to reduce disparities and improve oral health outcomes in underserved populations. PMID:26101336

  15. Income inequality, poverty, and population health: evidence from recent data for the United States.

    PubMed

    Ram, Rati

    2005-12-01

    In this study, state-level US data for the years 2000 and 1990 are used to provide additional evidence on the roles of income inequality and poverty in population health. Five main points are noted. First, contrary to the suggestion made in several recent studies, the income inequality parameter is observed to be quite robust and carries statistical significance in mortality equations estimated from several observation sets and a fairly wide variety of specificational choices. Second, the evidence does not indicate that significance of income inequality is lost when education variables are included. Third, similarly, the income inequality parameter shows significance when a race variable is added, and also when both race and urbanization terms are entered. Fourth, while poverty is seen to have some mortality-increasing consequence, the role of income inequality appears stronger. Fifth, income inequality retains statistical significance when a quadratic income term is added and also if the log-log version of a fairly inclusive model is estimated. I therefore suggest that the recent skepticism articulated by several scholars in regard to the robustness of the income inequality parameters in mortality equations estimated from the US data should be reconsidered.

  16. A decomposition of income-related health inequality applied to EQ-5D.

    PubMed

    Gundgaard, Jens; Lauridsen, Jørgen

    2006-12-01

    Income-related inequality in health and its relationship to sociodemographic characteristics have received considerable attention in the health economic literature. Recently a method was suggested for decomposing income-related health inequality to contributions from individual characteristics via additive dimensions, and this was applied to a Finnish case based on 15D health scores, where health is considered to be a sum of 15 individual health dimensions. The present study adds to this literature in several ways. First, we apply the decomposition approach to a Danish case which can be benchmarked to the Finnish. Second, we show how to apply the method to EQ-5D scores, which deviate from 15D scores by expressing health as individual depreciations of an equal endowment of perfect health. Third, we add life-style factors to the determinants of income-related health inequality. The empirical part of the study reveals discrepancies which can be attributed to differences between Finland and Denmark and to differences between the construction of 15D and EQ-5D scores. Finally, evidence of impact of life-style factors on income-related health inequality is found.

  17. The research agenda on oral health inequalities: the IADR-GOHIRA initiative.

    PubMed

    Williams, David M

    2014-01-01

    The World Health Organization asserts that oral health is a basic human right, yet this is a right enjoyed by few. Oral disease is a major problem in high-income countries, where the cost of treating oral diseases often exceeds that for major non-communicable diseases. In low-to-middle income countries, oral diseases are a severe and growing public health problem. Furthermore, major inequalities exist both within and between countries in terms of disease severity and prevalence, and major social gradients exist in the prevalence of oral disease. The International Association for Dental Research (IADR) has responded to the challenge of poor oral health and oral health inequalities through the Global Oral Health Inequalities: the Research Agenda (GOHIRA) initiative. In a Call to Action it has set out the priorities for research that can lead to a reduction in oral health inequalities. Three key challenges have been identified, namely gaps in knowledge and an insufficient focus on social policy, the separation of oral health from general health, and inadequate evidence-based data. Ten key research priorities have been identified with due regard to the differing needs of the variety of global health care systems, and a set of prioritized outcomes and a timeline for implementation have been defined. In the wider context of the proposals set out above, five immediate priorities for action have been proposed.

  18. Using Multiple-hierarchy Stratification and Life Course Approaches to Understand Health Inequalities: The Intersecting Consequences of Race, Gender, SES, and Age.

    PubMed

    Brown, Tyson H; Richardson, Liana J; Hargrove, Taylor W; Thomas, Courtney S

    2016-06-01

    This study examines how the intersecting consequences of race-ethnicity, gender, socioeconomics status (SES), and age influence health inequality. We draw on multiple-hierarchy stratification and life course perspectives to address two main research questions. First, does racial-ethnic stratification of health vary by gender and/or SES? More specifically, are the joint health consequences of racial-ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic stratification additive or multiplicative? Second, does this combined inequality in health decrease, remain stable, or increase between middle and late life? We use panel data from the Health and Retirement Study (N = 12,976) to investigate between- and within-group differences in in self-rated health among whites, blacks, and Mexican Americans. Findings indicate that the effects of racial-ethnic, gender, and SES stratification are interactive, resulting in the greatest racial-ethnic inequalities in health among women and those with higher levels of SES. Furthermore, racial-ethnic/gender/SES inequalities in health tend to decline with age. These results are broadly consistent with intersectionality and aging-as-leveler hypotheses.

  19. Using Multiple-hierarchy Stratification and Life Course Approaches to Understand Health Inequalities: The Intersecting Consequences of Race, Gender, SES, and Age

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Tyson H.; Richardson, Liana J.; Hargrove, Taylor W.; Thomas, Courtney S.

    2016-01-01

    This study examines how the intersecting consequences of race-ethnicity, gender, socioeconomics status (SES), and age influence health inequality. We draw on multiple-hierarchy stratification and life course perspectives to address two main research questions. First, does racial-ethnic stratification of health vary by gender and/or SES? More specifically, are the joint health consequences of racial-ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic stratification additive or multiplicative? Second, does this combined inequality in health decrease, remain stable, or increase between middle and late life? We use panel data from the Health and Retirement Study (N = 12,976) to investigate between- and within-group differences in in self-rated health among whites, blacks, and Mexican Americans. Findings indicate that the effects of racial-ethnic, gender, and SES stratification are interactive, resulting in the greatest racial-ethnic inequalities in health among women and those with higher levels of SES. Furthermore, racial-ethnic/gender/SES inequalities in health tend to decline with age. These results are broadly consistent with intersectionality and aging-as-leveler hypotheses. PMID:27284076

  20. Addressing the Social Determinants of Health of Children and Youth: A Role for SOPHE Members

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Allensworth, Diane D.

    2011-01-01

    The determinants of youth health disparities include poverty, unequal access to health care, poor environmental conditions, and educational inequities. Poor and minority children have more health problems and less access to health care than their higher socioeconomic status cohorts. Having more health problems leads to more absenteeism in school,…

  1. [Popular Health Insurance: key piece of inequity in health in Mexico].

    PubMed

    Tamez González, Silvia; Eibenschutz, Catalina

    2008-12-01

    This work is aimed at presenting an analysis of the Mexican health systems current situation resulting from successive reforms which have been carried out since the 1980s. Special interest is placed on the role which the Seguro Popular de Salud (SPS--a 'popular', meaning universal, health insurance plan) has played, being a key piece in commercializing medical attention. The first part of this work thus presents the main antecedents for the changes made during the last two decades of the last century and analyses the current situation since the start of the new millennium. Such analysis is centred on an initial evaluation of the Seguro Popular de Saluds scope and limitations from the perspective of equity in gaining access to medical attention. The analysis concludes that due to a medical perspective not having been present in the structural reforms, then this insurance policy represents a discretional, presidential and focalised programme taking funds away from the large social security institutions, obligating them (in many cases) to make budgetary adaptations to the detriment of providing quality attention. This situation will constitute (in the immediate future) a segmentation of the National Health System which will determine new conditions regarding the populations differential access to medical services, increase inequity in health and contribute towards increasing the great social inequality prevailing in México.

  2. Lay perceptions of health and environmental inequalities and their associations to mental health.

    PubMed

    Lima, Maria Luisa; Morais, Rita

    2015-11-01

    Health inequalities are very well documented in epidemiological research: rich people live longer and have fewer diseases than poor people. Recently, a growing amount of evidence from environmental sciences confirms that poor people are also more exposed to pollution and other environmental threats. However, research in the social sciences has shown a broad lack of awareness about health inequalities. In this paper, based on data collected in Portugal, we will analyze the consciousness of both health and environmental injustices and test one hypothesis for this social blindness. The results show, even more clearly than before, that public opinion tends to see rich and poor people as being equally susceptible to health and environmental events. Furthermore, those who have this equal view of the world present lower levels of depression and anxiety. Following cognitive adaptation theory, this "belief in an equal world" can be interpreted as a protective positive illusion about social justice, particularly relevant in one of the most unequal countries in Europe. PMID:26840814

  3. [Four axiological considerations in social epidemiology for the monitoring of health inequality].

    PubMed

    Mújica, Oscar J

    2015-12-01

    As the conceptual components of the most important contemporary public health agendas at the global and regional levels are brought into alignment and as it becomes more clearly understood that equity is a constitutive principle of these agendas, there is also a growing awareness of the strategic value of monitoring social inequalities in health. This is the health intelligence tool par excellence, not only for objectively assessing progress towards achieving health equity, but also for reporting action on the social determinants of health, progress towards the attainment of health for all, and the success of intersectoral efforts that take a "health in all policies" approach. These transformations are taking place in the context of an increasingly evident paradigm shift in public health. This essay presents four axiological considerations inherent to-and essential for -conceptualizing and implementing ways to measure and monitor health inequalities: ecoepidemiology as an emerging field in contemporary public health; the determinants of health as the causal model and core of the new paradigm; the relationship between the social hierarchy and health to understand the health gradient; and the practical need for a socioeconomic classification system that captures the social dimension in the determinants of health. The essay argues that these four axiological considerations lend epidemiologic coherence and rationality to the process of measuring and monitoring health inequalities and, by extension, to the development of pro-equity health policy proposals. PMID:27440090

  4. [Four axiological considerations in social epidemiology for the monitoring of health inequality].

    PubMed

    Mújica, Oscar J

    2015-12-01

    As the conceptual components of the most important contemporary public health agendas at the global and regional levels are brought into alignment and as it becomes more clearly understood that equity is a constitutive principle of these agendas, there is also a growing awareness of the strategic value of monitoring social inequalities in health. This is the health intelligence tool par excellence, not only for objectively assessing progress towards achieving health equity, but also for reporting action on the social determinants of health, progress towards the attainment of health for all, and the success of intersectoral efforts that take a "health in all policies" approach. These transformations are taking place in the context of an increasingly evident paradigm shift in public health. This essay presents four axiological considerations inherent to-and essential for -conceptualizing and implementing ways to measure and monitor health inequalities: ecoepidemiology as an emerging field in contemporary public health; the determinants of health as the causal model and core of the new paradigm; the relationship between the social hierarchy and health to understand the health gradient; and the practical need for a socioeconomic classification system that captures the social dimension in the determinants of health. The essay argues that these four axiological considerations lend epidemiologic coherence and rationality to the process of measuring and monitoring health inequalities and, by extension, to the development of pro-equity health policy proposals.

  5. Miles to Go before We Sleep: Racial Inequities in Health

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, David R.

    2012-01-01

    Large, pervasive, and persistent racial inequalities exist in the onset, courses, and outcomes of illness. A comprehensive understanding of the patterning of racial disparities indicates that racism in both its institutional and individual forms remains an important determinant. There is an urgent need to build the science base that would identify…

  6. [Indicators to monitor the evolution of the economic crisis and its effects on health and health inequalities. SESPAS report 2014].

    PubMed

    Pérez, Glòria; Rodríguez-Sanz, Maica; Domínguez-Berjón, Felicitas; Cabeza, Elena; Borrell, Carme

    2014-06-01

    The economic crisis has adverse effects on determinants of health and health inequalities. The aim of this article was to present a set of indicators of health and its determinants to monitor the effects of the crisis in Spain. On the basis of the conceptual framework proposed by the Commission for the Reduction of Social Health Inequalities in Spain, we searched for indicators of social, economic, and political (structural and intermediate) determinants of health, as well as for health indicators, bearing in mind the axes of social inequality (gender, age, socioeconomic status, and country of origin). The indicators were mainly obtained from official data sources published on the internet. The selected indicators are periodically updated and are comparable over time and among territories (among autonomous communities and in some cases among European Union countries), and are available for age groups, gender, socio-economic status, and country of origin. However, many of these indicators are not sufficiently reactive to rapid change, which occurs in the economic crisis, and consequently require monitoring over time. Another limitation is the lack of availability of indicators for the various axes of social inequality. In conclusion, the proposed indicators allow for progress in monitoring the effects of the economic crisis on health and health inequalities in Spain.

  7. [Indicators to monitor the evolution of the economic crisis and its effects on health and health inequalities. SESPAS report 2014].

    PubMed

    Pérez, Glòria; Rodríguez-Sanz, Maica; Domínguez-Berjón, Felicitas; Cabeza, Elena; Borrell, Carme

    2014-06-01

    The economic crisis has adverse effects on determinants of health and health inequalities. The aim of this article was to present a set of indicators of health and its determinants to monitor the effects of the crisis in Spain. On the basis of the conceptual framework proposed by the Commission for the Reduction of Social Health Inequalities in Spain, we searched for indicators of social, economic, and political (structural and intermediate) determinants of health, as well as for health indicators, bearing in mind the axes of social inequality (gender, age, socioeconomic status, and country of origin). The indicators were mainly obtained from official data sources published on the internet. The selected indicators are periodically updated and are comparable over time and among territories (among autonomous communities and in some cases among European Union countries), and are available for age groups, gender, socio-economic status, and country of origin. However, many of these indicators are not sufficiently reactive to rapid change, which occurs in the economic crisis, and consequently require monitoring over time. Another limitation is the lack of availability of indicators for the various axes of social inequality. In conclusion, the proposed indicators allow for progress in monitoring the effects of the economic crisis on health and health inequalities in Spain. PMID:24864001

  8. Does income-related health inequality change as the population ages? Evidence from Swedish panel data.

    PubMed

    Islam, M Kamrul; Gerdtham, Ulf-G; Clarke, Philip; Burström, Kristina

    2010-03-01

    This paper explains and empirically assesses the channels through which population aging may impact on income-related health inequality. Long panel data of Swedish individuals is used to estimate the observed trend in income-related health inequality, measured by the concentration index (CI). A decomposition procedure based on a fixed effects model is used to clarify the channels by which population aging affects health inequality. Based on current income rankings, we find that conventional unstandardized and age-gender-standardized CIs increase over time. This trend in CIs is, however, found to remain stable when people are instead ranked according to lifetime (mean) income. Decomposition analyses show that two channels are responsible for the upward trend in unstandardized CIs - retired people dropped in relative income ranking and the coefficient of variation of health increases as the population ages.

  9. Increasing the capacity of health sciences to address health disparities.

    PubMed

    Daley, Sandra P; Broyles, Shelia L; Rivera, Lourdes M; Reznik, Vivian M

    2009-09-01

    In order to create a cohort of investigators who are engaged in health disparities research, scholarship, and practice, and to increase the amount of funding in the university that is invested in research focused on reducing health disparities, the San Diego EXPORT Center implemented 2 major initiatives: (1) the support of underrepresented minority (URM) junior faculty development and (2) the funding for pilot research grants in health disparities. This paper describes the activities employed by the center and summarizes the outcomes of these two initiatives. Ninety-five percent (18 of 19) URM junior faculty completed the faculty development program, and 83.3% (15 of 18) of the completers are advancing in their academic careers at University of California San Diego (UCSD) and are teaching, working with populations at risk and/or conducting research in health disparities. EXPORT awarded 7 investigators a total of $429186 to conduct pilot research, and 71.4% (5/7) have now obtained $4.7 million in independent extramural funding. The San Diego EXPORT Center has increased the research capacity, strengthened the infrastructure for health disparities research, and created a cohort of successful URM junior faculty who are advancing in their academic careers. These investigators are already changing the climate at UCSD by their leadership activities, research focus, peer-networking, and mentoring of students.

  10. Metropolitan area income inequality and self-rated health--a multi-level study.

    PubMed

    Blakely, Tony A; Lochner, Kimberly; Kawachi, Ichiro

    2002-01-01

    We examined the association of income inequality measured at the metropolitan area (MA) and county levels with individual self-rated health. Individual-level data were drawn from 259,762 respondents to the March Current Population Survey in 1996 and 1998. Income inequality and average income were calculated from 1990 census data, the former using Gini coefficients. Multi-level logistic regression models were used. Controlling for sex, age, race, and individual-level household income, respondents living in high, medium-high, and medium-low income inequality MAs had odds ratios of fair/poor self-rated health of 1.20 (95% confidence interval 1.04-1.38), 1.07 (0.95-1.21), and 1.02 (0.91-1.15), respectively, compared to people living in the MAs with the lowest income inequality. However, we found only a small association of MA-level income inequality with fair/poor health when controlling further for average MA household income: odds ratios were 1.10 (0.95-1.28), 1.01 (0.89-1.14), and 1.00 (0.89-1.12), respectively. Likewise, we found only a small association of county-level income inequality with self-rated health although only 40.7% of the sample had an identified county on CPS data. Regarding the association of state-level income inequality with fair/poor health, we found the association to be considerably stronger among non-metropolitan (i.e. rural) compared to metropolitan residents.

  11. Gender inequity in Saudi Arabia and its role in public health.

    PubMed

    Mobaraki, A E H; Söderfeldt, B

    2010-01-01

    In Saudi Arabia, local interpretations of Islamic laws and social norms have a negative impact on the health and well-being of women. The objective of this literature review was to discuss gender inequity in Saudi Arabia and its relation to public health. Despite the scarcity of recent statistics and information regarding gender inequity in Saudi Arabia, this review is an attempt to explore this sensitive issue in this country. Women's roles and rights in Saudi society were examined, including education, marriage, polygamy, fertility, job opportunities, car driving and identification cards. Further research to assess knowledge, attitudes and practices towards health care of Saudi men and women is recommended.

  12. Understanding differences in income-related health inequality between geographic regions in Taiwan using the SF-36.

    PubMed

    Lee, Miaw-Chwen; Jones, Andrew Michael

    2007-10-01

    This paper measures and decomposes socio-economic inequality in general and mental health of Taiwan residents using concentration indices. The data from the 2001 Taiwanese National Health Interview Survey is based on multi-stage systematic sampling: 18,142 subjects aged 12 and above provided answers to questions on general and mental health domains of SF-36 Taiwan version. Significant inequalities favouring higher income groups emerge in both general and mental health, but these are particularly high for residents in remote areas. The decomposition analysis shows that in both areas income itself accounts for a significant and sizeable contribution (40-73%) of general and mental health inequality. The second largest contribution comes from inequality in education (15-22%) for general health and from employment status (17-18%) for mental health. Apart from these factors, age, and lifestyles are also important contributors for both general and mental health. We also find important regional disparities in income-related inequalities.

  13. Redesigning Health Care Practices to Address Childhood Poverty.

    PubMed

    Fierman, Arthur H; Beck, Andrew F; Chung, Esther K; Tschudy, Megan M; Coker, Tumaini R; Mistry, Kamila B; Siegel, Benjamin; Chamberlain, Lisa J; Conroy, Kathleen; Federico, Steven G; Flanagan, Patricia J; Garg, Arvin; Gitterman, Benjamin A; Grace, Aimee M; Gross, Rachel S; Hole, Michael K; Klass, Perri; Kraft, Colleen; Kuo, Alice; Lewis, Gena; Lobach, Katherine S; Long, Dayna; Ma, Christine T; Messito, Mary; Navsaria, Dipesh; Northrip, Kimberley R; Osman, Cynthia; Sadof, Matthew D; Schickedanz, Adam B; Cox, Joanne

    2016-04-01

    Child poverty in the United States is widespread and has serious negative effects on the health and well-being of children throughout their life course. Child health providers are considering ways to redesign their practices in order to mitigate the negative effects of poverty on children and support the efforts of families to lift themselves out of poverty. To do so, practices need to adopt effective methods to identify poverty-related social determinants of health and provide effective interventions to address them. Identification of needs can be accomplished with a variety of established screening tools. Interventions may include resource directories, best maintained in collaboration with local/regional public health, community, and/or professional organizations; programs embedded in the practice (eg, Reach Out and Read, Healthy Steps for Young Children, Medical-Legal Partnership, Health Leads); and collaboration with home visiting programs. Changes to health care financing are needed to support the delivery of these enhanced services, and active advocacy by child health providers continues to be important in effecting change. We highlight the ongoing work of the Health Care Delivery Subcommittee of the Academic Pediatric Association Task Force on Child Poverty in defining the ways in which child health care practice can be adapted to improve the approach to addressing child poverty.

  14. Redesigning Health Care Practices to Address Childhood Poverty.

    PubMed

    Fierman, Arthur H; Beck, Andrew F; Chung, Esther K; Tschudy, Megan M; Coker, Tumaini R; Mistry, Kamila B; Siegel, Benjamin; Chamberlain, Lisa J; Conroy, Kathleen; Federico, Steven G; Flanagan, Patricia J; Garg, Arvin; Gitterman, Benjamin A; Grace, Aimee M; Gross, Rachel S; Hole, Michael K; Klass, Perri; Kraft, Colleen; Kuo, Alice; Lewis, Gena; Lobach, Katherine S; Long, Dayna; Ma, Christine T; Messito, Mary; Navsaria, Dipesh; Northrip, Kimberley R; Osman, Cynthia; Sadof, Matthew D; Schickedanz, Adam B; Cox, Joanne

    2016-04-01

    Child poverty in the United States is widespread and has serious negative effects on the health and well-being of children throughout their life course. Child health providers are considering ways to redesign their practices in order to mitigate the negative effects of poverty on children and support the efforts of families to lift themselves out of poverty. To do so, practices need to adopt effective methods to identify poverty-related social determinants of health and provide effective interventions to address them. Identification of needs can be accomplished with a variety of established screening tools. Interventions may include resource directories, best maintained in collaboration with local/regional public health, community, and/or professional organizations; programs embedded in the practice (eg, Reach Out and Read, Healthy Steps for Young Children, Medical-Legal Partnership, Health Leads); and collaboration with home visiting programs. Changes to health care financing are needed to support the delivery of these enhanced services, and active advocacy by child health providers continues to be important in effecting change. We highlight the ongoing work of the Health Care Delivery Subcommittee of the Academic Pediatric Association Task Force on Child Poverty in defining the ways in which child health care practice can be adapted to improve the approach to addressing child poverty. PMID:27044692

  15. Individual Income, Area Deprivation, and Health: Do Income-Related Health Inequalities Vary by Small Area Deprivation?

    PubMed

    Siegel, Martin; Mielck, Andreas; Maier, Werner

    2015-11-01

    This paper aims to explore potential associations between health inequalities related to socioeconomic deprivation at the individual and the small area level. We use German cross-sectional survey data for the years 2002 and 2006, and measure small area deprivation via the German Index of Multiple Deprivation. We test the differences between concentration indices of income-related and small area deprivation related inequalities in obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. Our results suggest that small area deprivation and individual income both yield inequalities in health favoring the better-off, where individual income-related inequalities are significantly more pronounced than those related to small area deprivation. We then apply a semiparametric extension of Wagstaff's corrected concentration index to explore how individual-level health inequalities vary with the degree of regional deprivation. We find that the concentration of obesity, hypertension, and diabetes among lower income groups also exists at the small area level. The degree of deprivation-specific income-related inequalities in the three health outcomes exhibits only little variations across different levels of multiple deprivation for both sexes.

  16. New Approaches for Moving Upstream: How State and Local Health Departments Can Transform Practice to Reduce Health Inequalities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freudenberg, Nicholas; Franzosa, Emily; Chisholm, Janice; Libman, Kimberly

    2015-01-01

    Growing evidence shows that unequal distribution of wealth and power across race, class, and gender produces the differences in living conditions that are "upstream" drivers of health inequalities. Health educators and other public health professionals, however, still develop interventions that focus mainly on "downstream"…

  17. Resistance in Unjust Times: Archer, Structured Agency and the Sociology of Health Inequalities

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Few sociologists dissent from the notion that the mid- to late 1970s witnessed a shift in capitalism’s modus operandi. Its association with a rapid increase of social and material inequality is beyond dispute. This article opens with a brief summation of contemporary British trends in economic inequalities, and finds an echo of these trends in health inequalities. It is suggested that the sociology of health inequalities in Britain lacks an analysis of agency, and that such an analysis is crucial. A case is made that the recent critical realist contribution of Margaret Archer on ‘internal conversations’ lends itself to an understanding of agency that is salient here. The article develops her typology of internal conversations to present characterizations of the ‘focused autonomous reflexives’ whose mind-sets are causally efficacious for producing and reproducing inequalities, and the ‘dedicated meta-reflexives’ whose casts of mind might yet predispose them to mobilize resistance to inequalities. PMID:25076798

  18. Socioeconomic Inequality in Disability Among Adults: A Multicountry Study Using the World Health Survey

    PubMed Central

    Hosseinpoor, Ahmad R.; Stewart Williams, Jennifer A.; Gautam, Jeny; Posarac, Aleksandra; Officer, Alana; Verdes, Emese; Kostanjsek, Nenad

    2013-01-01

    Objectives. We compared national prevalence and wealth-related inequality in disability across a large number of countries from all income groups. Methods. Data on 218 737 respondents participating in the World Health Survey 2002–2004 were analyzed. A composite disability score (0–100) identified respondents who experienced significant disability in physical, mental, and social functioning irrespective of their underlying health condition. Disabled persons had disability composite scores above 40. Wealth was evaluated using an index of economic status in households based on ownership of selected assets. Socioeconomic inequalities were measured using the slope index of inequality and the relative index of inequality. Results. Median age-standardized disability prevalence was higher in the low- and lower middle-income countries. In all the study countries, disability was more prevalent in the poorest than in the richest wealth quintiles. Pro-rich inequality was statistically significant in 43 of 49 countries, with disability prevalence higher among populations with lower wealth. Median relative inequality was higher in the high- and upper middle-income countries. Conclusions. Integrating equity components into the monitoring of disability trends would help ensure that interventions reach and benefit populations with greatest need. PMID:23678901

  19. [Work and social inequalities in health: the case of professional cancers].

    PubMed

    Thébaud-Mony, Annie

    2004-12-31

    Work plays a major role in the production of social inequalities in health in two ways. It determines the place that each one is occupying in the production and in the society, which is influencing the social inequalities as regards living conditions, income, housing, social security and access to the healthcare. In addition, the conditions and the organization of work have direct effects on worker's health according to the types of social division of work and of occupational hazards. The social differentiation of the occupational exposure to carcinogenic substances is under the influence of such a social division of work which plays also a role in the production of the inequalities in cancer. Known since decades, such inequalities are generally considered as related to the individual behaviours. The role of work in the social construction of these inequalities is little questioned, even if epidemiological data exist concerning occupational cancer. These are not visible in public area and little recognised in occupational disease. French and European regulations are taking in account the prevention of occupational cancer, but the effective practices are still poorly developed. This article attempts to show what is the state of the problem in terms of knowledge, compensation and prevention of these cancers which are related to work and for a large part invisible. This invisibility is contributing to the social growth of social inequalities in cancer.

  20. Income Inequality and Health Status in the United States: Evidence from the Current Population Survey.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mellor, Jennifer M.; Milyo, Jeffrey

    2002-01-01

    Current Population Survey data on self-reported health status and income for the general population and those in poverty were analyzed. No consistent association was found between income inequality and individual health status. Previous findings of such an association were attributed to ecological fallacy or failure to control for individual…

  1. Intellectual Disabilities and Socioeconomic Inequalities in Health: An Overview of Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Graham, Hilary

    2005-01-01

    Background: There is an enduring association between socioeconomic position and health, both over time and across major causes of death. Children and adults with intellectual disabilities are disproportionately represented among the poorer and less healthy sections of the population. But research on health inequalities, and on the broader societal…

  2. Capitals and capabilities: linking structure and agency to reduce health inequalities.

    PubMed

    Abel, Thomas; Frohlich, Katherine L

    2012-01-01

    While empirical evidence continues to show that low socio-economic position is associated with less likely chances of being in good health, our understanding of why this is so remains less than clear. In this paper we examine the theoretical foundations for a structure-agency approach to the reduction of social inequalities in health. We use Max Weber's work on lifestyles to provide the explanation for the dualism between life chances (structure) and choice-based life conduct (agency). For explaining how the unequal distribution of material and non-material resources leads to the reproduction of unequal life chances and limitations of choice in contemporary societies, we apply Pierre Bourdieu's theory on capital interaction and habitus. We find, however, that Bourdieu's habitus concept is insufficient with regard to the role of agency for structural change and therefore does not readily provide for a theoretically supported move from sociological explanation to public health action. We therefore suggest Amartya Sen's capability approach as a useful link between capital interaction theory and action to reduce social inequalities in health. This link allows for the consideration of structural conditions as well as an active role for individuals as agents in reducing these inequalities. We suggest that people's capabilities to be active for their health be considered as a key concept in public health practice to reduce health inequalities. Examples provided from an ongoing health promotion project in Germany link our theoretical perspective to a practical experience.

  3. Addressing the mental health needs of pregnant and parenting adolescents.

    PubMed

    Hodgkinson, Stacy; Beers, Lee; Southammakosane, Cathy; Lewin, Amy

    2014-01-01

    Adolescent parenthood is associated with a range of adverse outcomes for young mothers, including mental health problems such as depression, substance abuse, and posttraumatic stress disorder. Teen mothers are also more likely to be impoverished and reside in communities and families that are socially and economically disadvantaged. These circumstances can adversely affect maternal mental health, parenting, and behavior outcomes for their children. In this report, we provide an overview of the mental health challenges associated with teen parenthood, barriers that often prevent teen mothers from seeking mental health services, and interventions for this vulnerable population that can be integrated into primary care services. Pediatricians in the primary care setting are in a unique position to address the mental health needs of adolescent parents because teens often turn to them first for assistance with emotional and behavioral concerns. Consequently, pediatricians can play a pivotal role in facilitating and encouraging teen parents' engagement in mental health treatment. PMID:24298010

  4. Adaptive Policies for Reducing Inequalities in the Social Determinants of Health

    PubMed Central

    Carey, Gemma; Crammond, Brad; Malbon, Eleanor; Carey, Nic

    2015-01-01

    Inequalities in the social determinants of health (SDH), which drive avoidable health disparities between different individuals or groups, is a major concern for a number of international organisations, including the World Health Organization (WHO). Despite this, the pathways to changing inequalities in the SDH remain elusive. The methodologies and concepts within system science are now viewed as important domains of knowledge, ideas and skills for tackling issues of inequality, which are increasingly understood as emergent properties of complex systems. In this paper, we introduce and expand the concept of adaptive policies to reduce inequalities in the distribution of the SDH. The concept of adaptive policy for health equity was developed through reviewing the literature on learning and adaptive policies. Using a series of illustrative examples from education and poverty alleviation, which have their basis in real world policies, we demonstrate how an adaptive policy approach is more suited to the management of the emergent properties of inequalities in the SDH than traditional policy approaches. This is because they are better placed to handle future uncertainties. Our intention is that these examples are illustrative, rather than prescriptive, and serve to create a conversation regarding appropriate adaptive policies for progressing policy action on the SDH. PMID:26673337

  5. Adaptive Policies for Reducing Inequalities in the Social Determinants of Health.

    PubMed

    Carey, Gemma; Crammond, Brad; Malbon, Eleanor; Carey, Nic

    2015-01-01

    Inequalities in the social determinants of health (SDH), which drive avoidable health disparities between different individuals or groups, is a major concern for a number of international organisations, including the World Health Organization (WHO). Despite this, the pathways to changing inequalities in the SDH remain elusive. The methodologies and concepts within system science are now viewed as important domains of knowledge, ideas and skills for tackling issues of inequality, which are increasingly understood as emergent properties of complex systems. In this paper, we introduce and expand the concept of adaptive policies to reduce inequalities in the distribution of the SDH. The concept of adaptive policy for health equity was developed through reviewing the literature on learning and adaptive policies. Using a series of illustrative examples from education and poverty alleviation, which have their basis in real world policies, we demonstrate how an adaptive policy approach is more suited to the management of the emergent properties of inequalities in the SDH than traditional policy approaches. This is because they are better placed to handle future uncertainties. Our intention is that these examples are illustrative, rather than prescriptive, and serve to create a conversation regarding appropriate adaptive policies for progressing policy action on the SDH. PMID:26673337

  6. A life course perspective on how racism may be related to health inequities.

    PubMed

    Gee, Gilbert C; Walsemann, Katrina M; Brondolo, Elizabeth

    2012-05-01

    Recent studies show that racism may influence health inequities. As individuals grow from infancy into old age, they encounter social institutions that may create new exposures to racial bias. Yet, few studies have considered this idea fully. We suggest a framework that shows how racism and health inequities may be viewed from a life course perspective. It applies the ideas of age-patterned exposures, sensitive periods, linked lives, latency period, stress proliferation, historic period, and cohorts. It suggests an overarching idea that racism can structure one's time in asset-building contexts (e.g., education) or disadvantaged contexts (e.g., prison). This variation in time and exposure can contribute to racial inequities in life expectancy and other health outcomes across the life course and over generations.

  7. A Life Course Perspective on How Racism May Be Related to Health Inequities

    PubMed Central

    Walsemann, Katrina M.; Brondolo, Elizabeth

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies show that racism may influence health inequities. As individuals grow from infancy into old age, they encounter social institutions that may create new exposures to racial bias. Yet, few studies have considered this idea fully. We suggest a framework that shows how racism and health inequities may be viewed from a life course perspective. It applies the ideas of age-patterned exposures, sensitive periods, linked lives, latency period, stress proliferation, historic period, and cohorts. It suggests an overarching idea that racism can structure one’s time in asset-building contexts (e.g., education) or disadvantaged contexts (e.g., prison). This variation in time and exposure can contribute to racial inequities in life expectancy and other health outcomes across the life course and over generations. PMID:22420802

  8. The role of geographic scale in testing the income inequality hypothesis as an explanation of health disparities.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhuo; Gotway Crawford, Carol A

    2012-09-01

    This study re-examined the role of geographic scale in measuring income inequality and testing the income inequality hypothesis (IIH) as an explanation of health disparities. We merged Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) 2000 data with income inequality indices constructed at different geographic scales to test the association between income inequality and four different health indicators, i.e., self-assessed health status as a morbidity measure, vaccination against influenza as a measure of use of preventive healthcare, having any kind of health insurance as a measure of access, and obesity as a modifiable health risk factor measure. Multilevel models are used in our regression of the health indicators on measures of income inequalities and control variables. Our analysis suggests that because income inequality is a contextual variable, income inequalities measured at different geographic scales have different interpretations and relate to societal characteristics at different levels. Therefore, a rejection of the IIH at one level does not necessarily negate the possibility that income inequality affects health at another level. Assessment across a variety of scales is needed to have a comprehensive picture of the IIH in any given study. Empirical results also show that whether the IIH holds could depend on the sex group examined and the health indicator used, which implies different mechanisms of IIH exist for different sex groups and health indicators, in addition to the geographic scale. The role of geographic scale should be more rigorously considered in social determinants of health research.

  9. Is Income Inequality a Determinant of Population Health? Part 2. U.S. National and Regional Trends in Income Inequality and Age- and Cause-Specific Mortality

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, John; Smith, George Davey; Harper, Sam; Hillemeier, Marianne

    2004-01-01

    This article describes U.S. income inequality and 100-year national and 30-year regional trends in age- and cause-specific mortality. There is little congruence between national trends in income inequality and age- or cause-specific mortality except perhaps for suicide and homicide. The variable trends in some causes of mortality may be associated regionally with income inequality. However, between 1978 and 2000 those regions experiencing the largest increases in income inequality had the largest declines in mortality (r= 0.81, p < 0.001). Understanding the social determinants of population health requires appreciating how broad indicators of social and economic conditions are related, at different times and places, to the levels and social distribution of major risk factors for particular health outcomes. PMID:15225332

  10. Is income inequality a determinant of population health? Part 2. U.S. National and regional trends in income inequality and age- and cause-specific mortality.

    PubMed

    Lynch, John; Smith, George Davey; Harper, Sam; Hillemeier, Marianne

    2004-01-01

    This article describes U.S. income inequality and 100-year national and 30-year regional trends in age- and cause-specific mortality. There is little congruence between national trends in income inequality and age- or cause-specific mortality except perhaps for suicide and homicide. The variable trends in some causes of mortality may be associated regionally with income inequality. However, between 1978 and 2000 those regions experiencing the largest increases in income inequality had the largest declines in mortality (r= 0.81, p < 0.001). Understanding the social determinants of population health requires appreciating how broad indicators of social and economic conditions are related, at different times and places, to the levels and social distribution of major risk factors for particular health outcomes.

  11. Community participatory research with deaf sign language users to identify health inequities.

    PubMed

    Barnett, Steven; Klein, Jonathan D; Pollard, Robert Q; Samar, Vincent; Schlehofer, Deirdre; Starr, Matthew; Sutter, Erika; Yang, Hongmei; Pearson, Thomas A

    2011-12-01

    Deaf people who use American Sign Language (ASL) are medically underserved and often excluded from health research and surveillance. We used a community participatory approach to develop and administer an ASL-accessible health survey. We identified deaf community strengths (e.g., a low prevalence of current smokers) and 3 glaring health inequities: obesity, partner violence, and suicide. This collaborative work represents the first time a deaf community has used its own data to identify health priorities.

  12. The impact of income inequality on individual and societal health: absolute income, relative income and statistical artefacts.

    PubMed

    Wildman, J

    2001-06-01

    The relative income hypothesis, that relative income has a direct effect on individual health, has become an important part of the literature on health inequalities. This paper presents a four-quadrant diagram, which shows the effect of income, relative income and aggregation bias on individual and societal health. The model predicts that increased income inequality reduces average health regardless of whether relative income affects individual health. If relative income does have a direct effect then societal health will decrease further.

  13. The cultural production of health inequalities: a cross-sectional, multilevel examination of 52 countries.

    PubMed

    Mansyur, Carol Leler; Amick, Benjamin C; Harrist, Ronald B; Franzini, Luisa; Roberts, Robert E

    2009-01-01

    In a 2001 report, the U.S. National Institutes of Health called for more integration of the social sciences into health-related research, including research guided by theories and methods that take social and cultural systems into consideration. Based on a theoretical framework that integrates Hofstede's cultural dimensions with sociological theory, the authors used multilevel modeling to explore the association of culture with structural inequality and health disparities. Their results support the idea that cultural dimensions and social structure, along with economic development, may account for much of the cross-national variation in the distribution of health inequalities. Sensitivity tests also suggest that an interaction between culture and social structure may confound the relationship between income inequality and health. It is necessary to identify important cultural and social structural characteristics before we can achieve an understanding of the complex, dynamic systems that affect health, and develop culturally sensitive interventions and policies. This study takes a step toward identifying some of the relevant cultural and structural influences. More research is needed to explore the pathways leading from the sociocultural environment to health inequalities.

  14. Introduction: the need to address older women's mental health issues.

    PubMed

    Malatesta, Victor J

    2007-01-01

    Women are the primary consumers of mental health services. Ironically, research addressing their unique needs lags behind that of men's issues. The aging process introduces an important variable that accentuates the relative lack of information and specific treatment guidelines for older women who are confronted by mental health problems. This volume offers a comprehensive overview for the health professional who is seeking a greater depth of understanding with respect to the study of mental health problems in general, and how these issues pertain specifically to women and the aging process. A second goal of this project is to provide the practicing therapist and counselor with a research update and a broad clinical perspective offered by seasoned clinicians. Using current psychiatric diagnosis as a framework, the contributions address the range of mental health problems, including dementia and cognitive impairment, schizophrenia, alcohol abuse, mood and anxiety disorders, traumatic and dissociative conditions, sexual and eating disorders, and personality disorders. It is hoped that this book will inform, inspire and encourage students and health professionals in their work with middle aged and older women who are facing mental health challenges. PMID:17588876

  15. Relatively poor, absolutely ill? A study of regional income inequality in Russia and its possible health consequences

    PubMed Central

    Carlson, P.

    2005-01-01

    Study objective: To investigate whether the income distribution in a Russian region has a "contextual" effect on individuals' self rated health, and whether the regional income distributions are related to regional health differences. Methods: The Russia longitudinal monitoring survey (RLMS) is a survey (n = 7696) that is representative of the Russian population. With multilevel regressions both individual as well as contextual effects on self rated health were estimated. Main results: The effect of income inequality is not negative on men's self rated health as long as the level of inequality is not very great. When inequality levels are high, however, there is a tendency for men's health to be negatively affected. Regional health differences among men are in part explained by regional income differences. On the other hand, women do not seem to be affected in the same way, and individual characteristics like age and educational level seem to be more important. Conclusions: It seems that a rise in income inequality has no negative effect on men's self rated health as long as the level of inequality is not very great. On the other hand, when inequality levels are higher a rise tends to affect men's health negatively. A curvilinear relation between self rated health and income distribution is an interesting hypothesis. It could help to explain the confusing results that arise when you look at countries with a high degree of income inequality (USA) and those with lower income inequality (for example, Japan and New Zealand). PMID:15831688

  16. Challenges in Diabetes Care: Can Digital Health Help Address Them?

    PubMed

    Iyengar, Varun; Wolf, Alexander; Brown, Adam; Close, Kelly

    2016-07-01

    In Brief There is great enthusiasm for the potential of digital health solutions in medicine and diabetes to address key care challenges: patient and provider burden, lack of data to inform therapeutic decision-making, poor access to care, and costs. However, the field is still in its nascent days; many patients and providers do not currently engage with digital health tools, and for those who do, the burden is still often high. Over time, digital health has excellent potential to collect data more seamlessly, make collected data more useful, and drive better outcomes at lower costs in less time. But there is still much to prove. This review offers key background information on the current state of digital health in diabetes, six of the most promising digital health technologies and services, and the challenges that remain. PMID:27621530

  17. Contribution of time-varying measures of health behaviours to socioeconomic inequalities in mortality: how to understand the underlying mechanisms?

    PubMed

    Oude Groeniger, Joost; van Lenthe, Frank J

    2016-10-01

    A higher prevalence of unhealthy behaviours in lower socioeconomic groups contributes to socioeconomic inequalities in mortality. Recent cohort studies suggest that the contribution of health behaviours to socioeconomic inequalities in mortality is larger when measured repeatedly over time ('time-varying') instead of once only ('time-fixed'). Explanations for a larger contribution of health behaviours, however, are hardly discussed in the current literature, and appear to be more complex than a widening of inequalities in health behaviours over time alone. We describe the use of time-varying health behaviours to examine socioeconomic inequalities in mortality, systematically listing underlying mechanisms that may cause differences between time-varying and time-fixed models, and show that these mechanisms may be specific for each health behaviour. The use of time-varying health behaviours advances our understanding of the explanation of socioeconomic inequalities in mortality, but underlying mechanisms must be carefully examined.

  18. Inequity in household's capacity to pay and health payments in Tehran-Iran-2013

    PubMed Central

    Rezapour, Aziz; Ebadifard Azar, Farbod; Azami Aghdash, Saber; Tanoomand, Asghar; Ahmadzadeh, Nahal; Sarabi Asiabar, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Background: Health inequality monitoring especially in Health care financing field is very important. Hence, this study tends to assess the inequality in household's capacity to pay and out-of-pocket health carepaymentsin Tehran metropolis. Methods: This cross-sectional study was performed in 2013.Thestudy population was selected by stratified cluster sampling, and they constitute the typical households living in Tehran (2200 households). The required data were collected through questionnaires and analyzed using Excel and Stata v.11. Concentration Index on inequality was used for measuring inequality status in capacity to pay and household payments for health care expenses; and also the concentration index for out-of-pocket payments and capacity to pay was used to determine the extent of inequality. The recall period for inpatient care was one year and 1 month for outpatient. Results: The average of out-of-pocket payments for receiving the outpatient services was determined to be 44.33US$ and for each inpatient1861.11 US$. Concentration index for household's outof- pocket payments for inpatient health care, out-of-pocket payments for outpatient health care and health prepayments were calculated 0.13, -0.10 and -0.11, respectively. Also, concentration index in household’s capacity to pay was estimated to be 0.11whichindicatedinequality to the benefit of the rich. The households used financing strategies like savings, borrowing or lending to pay their health care expenditures. Conclusion: According to this study, the poor spend a greater portion of their capacity to pay for outpatient and inpatient health care costs and prepayment, in comparison to the rich. Thus, supporting the vulnerable groups of the society to decrease out-of-pocket payments and increasing the household’s capacity to pay through government support in order to improve the household economic potential, must be considered very important. PMID:26793636

  19. Ensuring access to health care--Germany reforms supply structures to tackle inequalities.

    PubMed

    Ozegowski, Susanne; Sundmacher, Leonie

    2012-07-01

    Germany's ruling coalition has recently introduced a new bill to Parliament, the Care Structures Act (CSA), which aims to improve outpatient care supply structures, decentralize decision-making, facilitate cross-sectoral treatment, and strengthen innovation in the nation's health care sector. These objectives are to be achieved through a variety of measures, including changes in financial incentives for physicians, the transfer of decision-making to the regional level, and the creation of a new sector for highly specialized care. The opposition parties in Parliament and most health care stakeholders agree on the objectives of the reform package, but their evaluation of the bill is mixed. Physicians' representative organizations generally deem the law to be headed in the right direction, while the opposition parties, sickness funds, patients' rights groups and a majority of German federal states (Bundesländer) feel it does not adequately address the issues of supply inequity and sectoral division. This skepticism seems well founded. The reforms aimed at attracting physicians to high-need regions have significant shortcomings, and the measures to overcome sectoral barriers between the outpatient care and hospital sectors remain weak. Furthermore, the new procedure for including innovative treatment methods in the SHI benefits catalogue falls short of internationally recognized standards. PMID:22534587

  20. Access Disparity and Health Inequality of the Elderly: Unmet Needs and Delayed Healthcare

    PubMed Central

    Yamada, Tetsuji; Chen, Chia-Ching; Murata, Chiyoe; Hirai, Hiroshi; Ojima, Toshiyuki; Kondo, Katsunori; Harris, Joseph R.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate healthcare access disparity that will cause delayed and unmet healthcare needs for the elderly, and to examine health inequality and healthcare cost burden for the elderly. To produce clear policy applications, this study adapts a modified PRECEDE-PROCEED model for framing theoretical and experimental approaches. Data were collected from a large collection of the Community Tracking Study Household Survey 2003–2004 of the USA. Reliability and construct validity are examined for internal consistency and estimation of disparity and inequality are analyzed by using probit/ols regressions. The results show that predisposing factors (e.g., attitude, beliefs, and perception by socio-demographic differences) are negatively associated with delayed healthcare. A 10% increase in enabling factors (e.g., availability of health insurance coverage, and usual sources of healthcare providers) are significantly associated with a 1% increase in healthcare financing factors. In addition, information through a socio-economic network and support system has a 5% impact on an access disparity. Income, health status, and health inequality are exogenously determined. Designing and implementing easy healthcare accessibility (healthcare system) and healthcare financing methods, and developing a socio-economic support network (including public health information) are essential in reducing delayed healthcare and health inequality. PMID:25654774

  1. Access disparity and health inequality of the elderly: unmet needs and delayed healthcare.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Tetsuji; Chen, Chia-Ching; Murata, Chiyoe; Hirai, Hiroshi; Ojima, Toshiyuki; Kondo, Katsunori; Harris, Joseph R

    2015-02-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate healthcare access disparity that will cause delayed and unmet healthcare needs for the elderly, and to examine health inequality and healthcare cost burden for the elderly. To produce clear policy applications, this study adapts a modified PRECEDE-PROCEED model for framing theoretical and experimental approaches. Data were collected from a large collection of the Community Tracking Study Household Survey 2003-2004 of the USA. Reliability and construct validity are examined for internal consistency and estimation of disparity and inequality are analyzed by using probit/ols regressions. The results show that predisposing factors (e.g., attitude, beliefs, and perception by socio-demographic differences) are negatively associated with delayed healthcare. A 10% increase in enabling factors (e.g., availability of health insurance coverage, and usual sources of healthcare providers) are significantly associated with a 1% increase in healthcare financing factors. In addition, information through a socio-economic network and support system has a 5% impact on an access disparity. Income, health status, and health inequality are exogenously determined. Designing and implementing easy healthcare accessibility (healthcare system) and healthcare financing methods, and developing a socio-economic support network (including public health information) are essential in reducing delayed healthcare and health inequality. PMID:25654774

  2. Access disparity and health inequality of the elderly: unmet needs and delayed healthcare.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Tetsuji; Chen, Chia-Ching; Murata, Chiyoe; Hirai, Hiroshi; Ojima, Toshiyuki; Kondo, Katsunori; Harris, Joseph R

    2015-02-03

    The purpose of this study is to investigate healthcare access disparity that will cause delayed and unmet healthcare needs for the elderly, and to examine health inequality and healthcare cost burden for the elderly. To produce clear policy applications, this study adapts a modified PRECEDE-PROCEED model for framing theoretical and experimental approaches. Data were collected from a large collection of the Community Tracking Study Household Survey 2003-2004 of the USA. Reliability and construct validity are examined for internal consistency and estimation of disparity and inequality are analyzed by using probit/ols regressions. The results show that predisposing factors (e.g., attitude, beliefs, and perception by socio-demographic differences) are negatively associated with delayed healthcare. A 10% increase in enabling factors (e.g., availability of health insurance coverage, and usual sources of healthcare providers) are significantly associated with a 1% increase in healthcare financing factors. In addition, information through a socio-economic network and support system has a 5% impact on an access disparity. Income, health status, and health inequality are exogenously determined. Designing and implementing easy healthcare accessibility (healthcare system) and healthcare financing methods, and developing a socio-economic support network (including public health information) are essential in reducing delayed healthcare and health inequality.

  3. Addressing Maternal and Newborn Health: A Leadership Perspective.

    PubMed

    Mancuso, Leslie; Johnson, Peter; Hart, Leah; Austin, Kate

    2015-01-01

    Globally, each year 289,000 mothers die in childbirth and three million infants die in the first four weeks of life. The shortcomings in maternal and newborn health are particularly devastating in low-resource countries. This qualitative study describes the experience of an international nongovernmental organization, Jhpiego, which has been implementing public health programs to address maternal and newborn health outcomes for more than 40 years. Themes emerged from interviews with leaders of offices in a variety of countries with unique challenges related to health systems, human resources and infrastructure. Results emphasized the importance of partnerships with governments and international agencies for long-term program impact, as well as the recruitment of local talent for improving health systems to address problems that are best understood by the people who live and work in these countries. The discussion of program successes and challenges may inform best practices for promoting the health and wellness of women and families around the world. PMID:26860758

  4. Equally inequitable? A cross-national comparative study of racial health inequalities in the United States and Canada.

    PubMed

    Ramraj, Chantel; Shahidi, Faraz Vahid; Darity, William; Kawachi, Ichiro; Zuberi, Daniyal; Siddiqi, Arjumand

    2016-07-01

    Prior research suggests that racial inequalities in health vary in magnitude across societies. This paper uses the largest nationally representative samples available to compare racial inequalities in health in the United States and Canada. Data were obtained from ten waves of the National Health Interview Survey (n = 162,271,885) and the Canadian Community Health Survey (n = 19,906,131) from 2000 to 2010. We estimated crude and adjusted odds ratios, and risk differences across racial groups for a range of health outcomes in each country. Patterns of racial health inequalities differed across the United States and Canada. After adjusting for covariates, black-white and Hispanic-white inequalities were relatively larger in the United States, while aboriginal-white inequalities were larger in Canada. In both countries, socioeconomic factors did not explain inequalities across racial groups to the same extent. In conclusion, while racial inequalities in health exist in both the United States and Canada, the magnitudes of these inequalities as well as the racial groups affected by them, differ considerably across the two countries. This suggests that the relationship between race and health varies as a function of the societal context in which it operates.

  5. Equally inequitable? A cross-national comparative study of racial health inequalities in the United States and Canada.

    PubMed

    Ramraj, Chantel; Shahidi, Faraz Vahid; Darity, William; Kawachi, Ichiro; Zuberi, Daniyal; Siddiqi, Arjumand

    2016-07-01

    Prior research suggests that racial inequalities in health vary in magnitude across societies. This paper uses the largest nationally representative samples available to compare racial inequalities in health in the United States and Canada. Data were obtained from ten waves of the National Health Interview Survey (n = 162,271,885) and the Canadian Community Health Survey (n = 19,906,131) from 2000 to 2010. We estimated crude and adjusted odds ratios, and risk differences across racial groups for a range of health outcomes in each country. Patterns of racial health inequalities differed across the United States and Canada. After adjusting for covariates, black-white and Hispanic-white inequalities were relatively larger in the United States, while aboriginal-white inequalities were larger in Canada. In both countries, socioeconomic factors did not explain inequalities across racial groups to the same extent. In conclusion, while racial inequalities in health exist in both the United States and Canada, the magnitudes of these inequalities as well as the racial groups affected by them, differ considerably across the two countries. This suggests that the relationship between race and health varies as a function of the societal context in which it operates. PMID:27239704

  6. Neighbourhood Deprivation, Health Inequalities and Service Access by Adults with Intellectual Disabilities: A Cross-Sectional Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cooper, S. A.; McConnachie, A.; Allan, L. M.; Melville, C.; Smiley, E.; Morrison, J.

    2011-01-01

    Background: Adults with intellectual disabilities (IDs) experience health inequalities and are more likely to live in deprived areas. The aim of this study was to determine whether the extent of deprivation of the area a person lives in affects their access to services, hence contributing to health inequalities. Method: A cross-sectional study…

  7. Out of our inner city backyards: re-scaling urban environmental health inequity assessment.

    PubMed

    Masuda, Jeffrey R; Teelucksingh, Cheryl; Zupancic, Tara; Crabtree, Alexis; Haber, Rebecca; Skinner, Emily; Poland, Blake; Frankish, Jim; Fridell, Mara

    2012-10-01

    In this paper, we report the results of a three-year research project (2008-2011) that aimed to identify urban environmental health inequities using a photography-mediated qualitative approach adapted for comparative neighbourhood-level assessment. The project took place in Vancouver, Toronto, and Winnipeg, Canada and involved a total of 49 inner city community researchers who compared environmental health conditions in numerous neighbourhoods across each city. Using the social determinants of health as a guiding framework, community researchers observed a wide range of differences in health-influencing private and public spaces, including sanitation services, housing, parks and gardens, art displays, and community services. The comparative process enabled community researchers to articulate in five distinct ways how such observable conditions represented system level inequities. The findings inform efforts to shift environmental health intervention from constricted action within derelict urban districts to more coordinated mobilization for health equity in the city.

  8. Nutritional metabolomics: Progress in addressing complexity in diet and health

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Dean P.; Park, Youngja; Ziegler, Thomas R.

    2013-01-01

    Nutritional metabolomics is rapidly maturing to use small molecule chemical profiling to support integration of diet and nutrition in complex biosystems research. These developments are critical to facilitate transition of nutritional sciences from population-based to individual-based criteria for nutritional research, assessment and management. This review addresses progress in making these approaches manageable for nutrition research. Important concept developments concerning the exposome, predictive health and complex pathobiology, serve to emphasize the central role of diet and nutrition in integrated biosystems models of health and disease. Improved analytic tools and databases for targeted and non-targeted metabolic profiling, along with bioinformatics, pathway mapping and computational modeling, are now used for nutrition research on diet, metabolism, microbiome and health associations. These new developments enable metabolome-wide association studies (MWAS) and provide a foundation for nutritional metabolomics, along with genomics, epigenomics and health phenotyping, to support integrated models required for personalized diet and nutrition forecasting. PMID:22540256

  9. Social capital, income inequality, and self-rated health in 45 countries.

    PubMed

    Mansyur, Carol; Amick, Benjamin C; Harrist, Ronald B; Franzini, Luisa

    2008-01-01

    There has been growing interest in the relationship between the social environment and health. Among the concepts that have emerged over the past decade to examine this relationship are socio-economic inequality and social capital. Using data from the World Values Survey and the World Bank, we tested the hypothesis that self-rated health is affected by social capital and income inequality cross-nationally. The merit of our approach was that we used multilevel methods in a larger and more diverse sample of countries than used previously. Our results indicated that, for a large number of diverse countries, commonly used measures of social capital and income inequality had strong compositional effects on self-rated health, but inconsistent contextual effects, depending on the countries included. Cross-level interactions suggested that contextual measures can moderate the effect of compositional measures on self-rated health. Sensitivity tests indicated that effects varied in different subsets of countries. Future research should examine country-specific characteristics, such as differences in cultural values or norms, which may influence the relationships between social capital, income inequality, and health.

  10. The ethics of everyday practice in primary medical care: responding to social health inequities

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Social and structural inequities shape health and illness; they are an everyday presence within the doctor-patient encounter yet, there is limited ethical guidance on what individual physicians should do. This paper draws on a study that explored how doctors and their professional associations ought to respond to the issue of social health inequities. Results Some see doctors as bound by a notion of care that is blind to a patient's social position, while others respond to this issue through invoking notions of justice and human rights where access to care is a prime focus. Both care and justice orientations however conceal important tensions linked to the presence of bioethical principles underpinning these. Other normative ethical theories like deontology, virtue ethics and utilitarianism do not provide adequate guidance on the problem of social health inequities either. Conclusion This paper explores if Bauman's notion of "forms of togetherness" provides the basis of a relational ethical theory that can help to develop a response to social health inequities of relevance to individual physicians. This theory goes beyond silence on the influence of social position of health and avoids amoral regulatory approaches to monitoring equity of care provision. PMID:20438627

  11. The impact of economic crises on social inequalities in health: what do we know so far?

    PubMed

    Bacigalupe, Amaia; Escolar-Pujolar, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    Since 2008, Western countries are going through a deep economic crisis whose health impacts seem to be fundamentally counter-cyclical: when economic conditions worsen, so does health, and mortality tends to rise. While a growing number of studies have presented evidence on the effect of crises on the average population health, a largely neglected aspect of research is the impact of crises and the related political responses on social inequalities in health, even if the negative consequences of the crises are primarily borne by the most disadvantaged populations. This commentary will reflect on the results of the studies that have analyzed the effect of economic crises on social inequalities in health up to 2013. With some exceptions, the studies show an increase in health inequalities during crises, especially during the Southeast Asian and Japanese crises and the Soviet Union crisis, although it is not always evident for both sexes or all health or socioeconomic variables. In the Nordic countries during the nineties, a clear worsening of health equity did not occur. Results about the impacts of the current economic recession on health equity are still inconsistent. Some of the factors that could explain this variability in results are the role of welfare state policies, the diversity of time periods used in the analyses, the heterogeneity of socioeconomic and health variables considered, the changes in the socioeconomic profile of the groups under comparison in times of crises, and the type of measures used to analyze the magnitude of social inequalities in health. Social epidemiology should further collaborate with other disciplines to help produce more accurate and useful evidence about the relationship between crises and health equity.

  12. A Systematic Literature Review of Studies Analyzing Inequalities in Health Expectancy among the Older Population

    PubMed Central

    Pongiglione, Benedetta; De Stavola, Bianca L.; Ploubidis, George B.

    2015-01-01

    Aim To collect, organize and appraise evidence of socioeconomic and demographic inequalities in health and mortality among the older population using a summary measure of population health: Health Expectancy. Methods A systematic literature review was conducted. Literature published in English before November 2014 was searched via two possible sources: three electronic databases (Web of Science, Medline and Embase), and references in selected articles. The search was developed combining terms referring to outcome, exposure and participants, consisting in health expectancy, socioeconomic and demographic groups, and older population, respectively. Results Of 256 references identified, 90 met the inclusion criteria. Six references were added after searching reference lists of included articles. Thirty-three studies were focused only on gender-based inequalities; the remaining sixty-three considered gender along with other exposures. Findings were organized according to two leading perspectives: the type of inequalities considered and the health indicators chosen to measure health expectancy. Evidence of gender-based differentials and a socioeconomic gradient were found in all studies. A remarkable heterogeneity in the choice of health indicators used to compute health expectancy emerged as well as a non-uniform way of defining same health conditions. Conclusions Health expectancy is a useful and convenient measure to monitor and assess the quality of ageing and compare different groups and populations. This review showed a general agreement of results obtained in different studies with regard to the existence of inequalities associated with several factors, such as gender, education, behaviors, and race. However, the lack of a standardized definition of health expectancy limits its comparability across studies. The need of conceiving health expectancy as a comparable and repeatable measure was highlighted as fundamental to make it an informative instrument for policy

  13. Addressing health disparities: the role of an African American health ministry committee.

    PubMed

    Austin, Sandra; Harris, Gertrude

    2011-01-01

    Healthy People 2010 identified the need to address health disparities among African Americans, Asians, American Indians, Hispanics, Alaskan American, and Pacific Islanders. These are groups disproportionately affected by cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, HIV infection, and AIDSs. Despite the growing body of research on health disparities and effective interventions, there is a great need to learn more about culturally appropriate interventions. Social work professional values and ethics require that service delivery be culturally competent and effective. Social workers can collaborate with community based health promotion services, exploring new ways to ensure that health disparities can be addressed in institutions to which African Americans belong. This article presents findings of an African American health ministry committee's health promotion initiatives and probed the viability of a health ministry committee' role in addressing health disparities through education. The promising role of the Black church in addressing health disparities is explored.

  14. The role of cognitive ability in socio-economic inequalities in oral health.

    PubMed

    Sabbah, W; Watt, R G; Sheiham, A; Tsakos, G

    2009-04-01

    Studies have postulated a role for cognitive ability in socio-economic inequalities in general health. This role has not been examined for oral health inequalities. We examined whether cognitive ability was associated with oral health, and whether it influenced the relationship between oral health and socio-economic position. Data were from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1988-1994), for participants aged 20-59 years. Oral health was indicated by extent of gingival bleeding, extent of loss of periodontal attachment, and tooth loss. Simple reaction time test, symbol digit substitution test, and serial digit learning test indicated cognitive ability. Education and poverty-income ratio were used as markers of socio-economic position. Participants with poorer cognitive ability had poorer oral health for all indicators. The association between oral health and socio-economic position attenuated after adjustment for cognitive ability. Cognitive ability explained part, but not all, of the socio-economic inequalities in oral health.

  15. Socioeconomic Inequalities in Mental Health of Adult Population: Serbian National Health Survey

    PubMed Central

    Santric-Milicevic, Milena; Jankovic, Janko; Trajkovic, Goran; Terzic-Supic, Zorica; Babic, Uros; Petrovic, Marija

    2016-01-01

    Background: The global burden of mental disorders is rising. In Serbia, anxiety is the leading cause of disability-adjusted life years. Serbia has no mental health survey at the population level. The information on prevalence of mental disorders and related socioeconomic inequalities are valuable for mental care improvement. Aims: To explore the prevalence of mental health disorders and socioeconomic inequalities in mental health of adult Serbian population, and to explore whether age years and employment status interact with mental health in urban and rural settlements. Study Design: Cross-sectional study. Methods: This study is an additional analysis of Serbian Health Survey 2006 that was carried out with standardized household questionnaires at the representative sample of 7673 randomly selected households – 15563 adults. The response rate was 93%. A multivariate logistic regression modeling highlighted the predictors of the 5 item Mental Health Inventory (MHI-5), and of chronic anxiety or depression within eight independent variables (age, gender, type of settlement, marital status and self-perceived health, education, employment status and Wealth Index). The significance level in descriptive statistics, chi square analysis and bivariate and multivariate logistic regressions was set at p<0.05. Results: Chronic anxiety or depression was seen in 4.9% of the respondents, and poor MHI-5 in 47% of respondents. Low education (Odds Ratios 1.32; 95% confidence intervals=1.16–1.51), unemployment (1.36; 1.18–1.56), single status (1.34; 1.23–1.45), and Wealth Index middle class (1.20; 1.08–1.32) or poor (1.33; 1.21–1.47) were significantly related with poor MHI-5. Unemployed persons in urban settlements had higher odds for poormMHI-5 than unemployed in rural areas (0.73; 0.59–0.89). Single (1.50; 1.26–1.78), unemployed (1.39; 1.07–1.80) and inactive respondents (1.42; 1.10–1.83) had a higher odds of chronic anxiety or depression than married

  16. Parental income and the dynamics of health inequality in early childhood--evidence from the UK.

    PubMed

    Kruk, Kai Eberhard

    2013-10-01

    Recent research documents that socioeconomic health inequality has its origins in early childhood, that is, children from high-income families have better health than their peers from low-income families. In this article, we investigate the determinants of the evolution of socioeconomic health inequality in the UK. We analyze the relation between household income and both the prevalence and the consequences of adverse health conditions by following up infants throughout early childhood. We find evidence for the hypothesis that parental income operates through two different channels: it reduces the likelihood of incurring certain illnesses and it cushions the consequences of health conditions. Our results also indicate that a higher household income increases the probability that children fully recover from some diseases within a given period.

  17. Rising inequalities in income and health in China: who is left behind?

    PubMed

    Baeten, Steef; Van Ourti, Tom; van Doorslaer, Eddy

    2013-12-01

    In recent decades, China has experienced double-digit economic growth rates and rising inequality. This paper implements a new decomposition approach using the China Health and Nutrition Survey (1991-2006) to examine the extent to which changes in level and distribution of incomes and in income mobility are related to health disparities between rich and poor. We find that health disparities in China relate to rising income inequality and in particular to the adverse health and income experience of older (wo)men, but not to the growth rate of average incomes over the last decades. These findings suggest that replacement incomes and pensions at older ages may be one of the most important policy levers for reducing health disparities between rich and poor Chinese.

  18. Statistical Properties of Generalized Gini Coefficient with Application to Health Inequality Measurement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lai, Dejian; Huang, Jin; Risser, Jan M.; Kapadia, Asha S.

    2008-01-01

    In this article, we report statistical properties of two classes of generalized Gini coefficients (G1 and G2). The theoretical results were assessed via Monte Carlo simulations. Further, we used G1 and G2 on life expectancy to measure health inequalities among the provinces of China and the states of the United States. For China, the results…

  19. Health inequalities in European cities: perceptions and beliefs among local policymakers

    PubMed Central

    Morrison, Joana; Pons-Vigués, Mariona; Bécares, Laia; Burström, Bo; Gandarillas, Ana; Domínguez-Berjón, Felicitas; Diez, Èlia; Costa, Giuseppe; Ruiz, Milagros; Pikhart, Hynek; Marinacci, Chiara; Hoffmann, Rasmus; Santana, Paula; Borrell, Carme

    2014-01-01

    Objective To describe the knowledge and beliefs of public policymakers on social inequalities in health and policies to reduce them in cities from different parts of Europe during 2010 and 2011. Design Phenomenological qualitative study. Setting 13 European cities. Participants 19 elected politicians and officers with a directive status from 13 European cities. Main outcome Policymaker's knowledge and beliefs. Results Three emerging discourses were identified among the interviewees, depending on the city of the interviewee. Health inequalities were perceived by most policymakers as differences in life-expectancy between population with economic, social and geographical differences. Reducing health inequalities was a priority for the majority of cities which use surveys as sources of information to analyse these. Bureaucracy, funding and population beliefs were the main barriers. Conclusions The majority of the interviewed policymakers gave an account of interventions focusing on the immediate determinants and aimed at modifying lifestyles and behaviours in the more disadvantaged classes. More funding should be put towards academic research on effective universal policies, evaluation of their impact and training policymakers and officers on health inequalities in city governments. PMID:24871536

  20. The intergenerational transmission of inequality: Maternal disadvantage and health at birth

    PubMed Central

    Aizer, Anna; Currie, Janet

    2015-01-01

    Health at birth is an important predictor of long-term outcomes, including education, income, and disability. Recent evidence suggests that maternal disadvantage leads to worse health at birth through poor health behaviors; exposure to harmful environmental factors; worse access to medical care, including family planning; and worse underlying maternal health. With increasing inequality, those at the bottom of the distribution now face relatively worse economic conditions, but newborn health among the most disadvantaged has actually improved. The most likely explanation is increasing knowledge about determinants of infant health and how to protect it along with public policies that put this knowledge into practice. PMID:24855261

  1. Inequalities in mental health in the spanish autonomous communities: a multilevel study.

    PubMed

    Rocha, Kátia B; Perez, Katherine; Rodriguez-Sanz, Maica; Muntaner, Carles; Alonso, Jordi; Borrell, Carme

    2015-05-20

    The aim of this study was to analyze inequalities in the prevalence of poor mental health and their association with socioeconomic variables and with the care network in the Autonomous Communities in Spain. A cross-sectional multilevel study was performed, which analyzed individual data from the National Health Survey in Spain (ENS), in 2006 (n = 29,476 people over the age of 16). The prevalence of poor mental health was the dependent variable, measured by the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12 > = 3). Individual and contextual socioeconomic variables, along with mental health services in the Autonomous Communities, were included as independent variables. Models of multilevel logistic regression were used, and odds ratios (OR) were obtained, with confidence intervals (CI) of 95%. The results showed that there are inequalities in the prevalence of poor mental health in Spain, associated to contextual variables, such as unemployment rate (men OR 1.04 CI 1.01-1.07; women OR 1.02 CI 1.00-1.05). On the other hand, it was observed that inequalities in the mental health care resources in the Autonomous Communities also have an impact on poor mental health.

  2. The Communications Revolution and Health Inequalities in the 21st Century: Implications for Cancer Control

    PubMed Central

    Viswanath, K.; Nagler, Rebekah; Bigman-Galimore, Cabral; McCauley, Michael; Jung, Minsoo; Ramanadhan, Shoba

    2012-01-01

    The radical and transformative developments in information and communication technologies (ICTs) offer unprecedented opportunities to promote cancer control and enhance population and individual health. However, the current context in which these technologies are being deployed—where cancer incidence and mortality and communication are characterized by inequalities among different racial/ethnic and socioeconomic status groups—raises important questions for cancer communication research, policy, and practice. Drawing on illustrative data, this essay characterizes the communications revolution and elucidates on its implications for cancer control, with a particular focus on communication inequalities and cancer disparities. PMID:23045545

  3. The communications revolution and health inequalities in the 21st century: implications for cancer control.

    PubMed

    Viswanath, K; Nagler, Rebekah H; Bigman-Galimore, Cabral A; McCauley, Michael P; Jung, Minsoo; Ramanadhan, Shoba

    2012-10-01

    The radical and transformative developments in information and communication technologies (ICT) offer unprecedented opportunities to promote cancer control and enhance population and individual health. However, the current context in which these technologies are being deployed--where cancer incidence and mortality and communication are characterized by inequalities among different racial/ethnic and socioeconomic status groups--raises important questions for cancer communication research, policy, and practice. Drawing on illustrative data, this essay characterizes the communications revolution and elucidates its implications for cancer control, with a particular focus on communication inequalities and cancer disparities.

  4. Beyond status: relating status inequality to performance and health in teams.

    PubMed

    Christie, Amy M; Barling, Julian

    2010-09-01

    Status structures in organizations are ubiquitous yet largely ignored in organizational research. We offer a conceptualization of team status inequality, or the extent to which status positions on a team are dispersed. Status inequality is hypothesized to be negatively related to individual performance and physical health for low-status individuals when uncooperative behavior is high. Trajectories of the outcomes across time are also explored. Analyses using multilevel modeling largely support our hypotheses in a sample of National Basketball Association players across six time points from 2000 to 2005.

  5. New approaches for moving upstream: how state and local health departments can transform practice to reduce health inequalities.

    PubMed

    Freudenberg, Nicholas; Franzosa, Emily; Chisholm, Janice; Libman, Kimberly

    2015-04-01

    Growing evidence shows that unequal distribution of wealth and power across race, class, and gender produces the differences in living conditions that are "upstream" drivers of health inequalities. Health educators and other public health professionals, however, still develop interventions that focus mainly on "downstream" behavioral risks. Three factors explain the difficulty in translating this knowledge into practice. First, in their allegiance to the status quo, powerful elites often resist upstream policies and programs that redistribute wealth and power. Second, public health practice is often grounded in dominant biomedical and behavioral paradigms, and health departments also face legal and political limits on expanding their scope of activities. Finally, the evidence for the impact of upstream interventions is limited, in part because methodologies for evaluating upstream interventions are less developed. To illustrate strategies to overcome these obstacles, we profile recent campaigns in the United States to enact living wages, prevent mortgage foreclosures, and reduce exposure to air pollution. We then examine how health educators working in state and local health departments can transform their practice to contribute to campaigns that reallocate the wealth and power that shape the living conditions that determine health and health inequalities. We also consider health educators' role in producing the evidence that can guide transformative expansion of upstream interventions to reduce health inequalities. PMID:25829117

  6. New approaches for moving upstream: how state and local health departments can transform practice to reduce health inequalities.

    PubMed

    Freudenberg, Nicholas; Franzosa, Emily; Chisholm, Janice; Libman, Kimberly

    2015-04-01

    Growing evidence shows that unequal distribution of wealth and power across race, class, and gender produces the differences in living conditions that are "upstream" drivers of health inequalities. Health educators and other public health professionals, however, still develop interventions that focus mainly on "downstream" behavioral risks. Three factors explain the difficulty in translating this knowledge into practice. First, in their allegiance to the status quo, powerful elites often resist upstream policies and programs that redistribute wealth and power. Second, public health practice is often grounded in dominant biomedical and behavioral paradigms, and health departments also face legal and political limits on expanding their scope of activities. Finally, the evidence for the impact of upstream interventions is limited, in part because methodologies for evaluating upstream interventions are less developed. To illustrate strategies to overcome these obstacles, we profile recent campaigns in the United States to enact living wages, prevent mortgage foreclosures, and reduce exposure to air pollution. We then examine how health educators working in state and local health departments can transform their practice to contribute to campaigns that reallocate the wealth and power that shape the living conditions that determine health and health inequalities. We also consider health educators' role in producing the evidence that can guide transformative expansion of upstream interventions to reduce health inequalities.

  7. Evaluating complex community-based health promotion: addressing the challenges.

    PubMed

    Jolley, Gwyneth

    2014-08-01

    Community-based health promotion is poorly theorised and lacks an agreed evidence-base. This paper examines characteristics of community-based health promotion and the challenges they present to evaluation. A review of health promotion evaluation leads to an exploration of more recent approaches, drawing on ideas from complexity theory and developmental evaluation. A reflexive analysis of three program evaluations previously undertaken as an evaluation consultant is used to develop a conceptual model to help in the design and conduct of health promotion evaluation. The model is further explored by applying it retrospectively to one evaluation. Findings suggest that the context-contingent nature of health promotion programs; turbulence in the community context and players; multiple stakeholders, goals and strategies; and uncertainty of outcomes all contribute to the complexity of interventions. Bringing together insights from developmental evaluation and complexity theory can help to address some evaluation challenges. The proposed model emphasises recognising and responding to changing contexts and emerging outcomes, providing rapid feedback and facilitating reflexive practice. This will enable the evaluator to gain a better understanding of the influence of context and other implementation factors in a complex setting. Use of the model should contribute to building cumulative evidence and knowledge in order to identify the principles of health promotion effectiveness that may be transferable to new situations.

  8. Racial inequality and occupational health in the United States: the effect on white workers.

    PubMed

    Robinson, J C

    1985-01-01

    While a number of studies have shown that black workers in the United States face higher levels of occupation-related hazards to health and safety than do whites, even controlling for differences in education and experience, little attention has been paid to the implications of racial inequality for the overall level of hazard in the economy. Alternative theories of the causes of occupational diseases and injuries imply that greater inequality helps white workers, by assigning them to the safer jobs, or on the contrary hurts white workers, by weakening the unity and bargaining power of the workforce as a whole. This article analyzes the impact of racial inequality on the level of hazard reported by white workers. Consistent with the institutional and Marxian theories of the labor market, the statistical findings indicate that white workers employed in occupations and industries containing greater numbers of blacks report greater exposure to hazard than comparable white workers in occupations and industries employing fewer blacks.

  9. A cross-sectional pilot study of the Scottish early development instrument: a tool for addressing inequality

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Early childhood is recognised as a key developmental phase with implications for social, academic, health and wellbeing outcomes in later childhood and indeed throughout the adult lifespan. Community level data on inequalities in early child development are therefore required to establish the impact of government early years’ policies and programmes on children’s strengths and vulnerabilities at local and national level. This would allow local leaders to target tailored interventions according to community needs to improve children’s readiness for the transition to school. The challenge is collecting valid data on sufficient samples of children entering school to derive robust inferences about each local birth cohort’s developmental status. This information needs to be presented in a way that allows community stakeholders to understand the results, expediting the improvement of preschool programming to improve future cohorts’ development in the early years. The aim of the study was to carry out a pilot to test the feasibility and ease of use in Scotland of the 104-item teacher-administered Early Development Instrument, an internationally validated measure of children’s global development at school entry developed in Canada. Methods Phase 1 was piloted in an education district with 14 Primary 1 teachers assessing a cohort of 154 children, following which the instrument was adapted for the Scottish context (Scottish Early Development Instrument: SEDI). Phase 2 was then carried out using the SEDI. Data were analysed from a larger sample of 1090 participants, comprising all Primary 1 children within this school district, evaluated by 68 teachers. Results The SEDI displayed adequate psychometric and discriminatory properties and is appropriate for use across Scotland without any further modifications. Children in the lowest socioeconomic status quintiles were 2–3 times more likely than children in the most affluent quintile to score low in at

  10. Prioritizing action on health inequities in cities: An evaluation of Urban Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool (Urban HEART) in 15 cities from Asia and Africa.

    PubMed

    Prasad, Amit; Kano, Megumi; Dagg, Kendra Ann-Masako; Mori, Hanako; Senkoro, Hawa Hamisi; Ardakani, Mohammad Assai; Elfeky, Samar; Good, Suvajee; Engelhardt, Katrin; Ross, Alex; Armada, Francisco

    2015-11-01

    Following the recommendations of the Commission on Social Determinants of Health (2008), the World Health Organization (WHO) developed the Urban Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool (HEART) to support local stakeholders in identifying and planning action on health inequities. The objective of this report is to analyze the experiences of