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Measuring Inequalities in Health: What do we Know? What do we need to Know?

Costa-i-Font, Joan and Hernández-Quevedo, Cristina (2012) Measuring Inequalities in Health: What do we Know? What do we need to Know? Health Policy, 106 (2). pp. 195-206. ISSN 0168-8510

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Abstract

We argue that policy analysis aiming at curving inequalities in health calls for a better understanding of what we know about its measurement pathways. Assuming that health is a good that individuals trade off against other goods, unavoidable health inequalities result when after controlling for unavoidable factors (e.g., age and gender), differences in socioeconomic status of an individual systemically engender differences in health outcomes. However, the measurement of such inequality and underpinning reasons behind are not suggestive of a clear picture. In reviewing the literature, we conclude that it is unclear what the evidence suggests about the reasons for health inequalities as well as the best possible instruments to measure both inequality and socioeconomic health gradients. We provide an evaluation of the different sources of health inequity and we draw upon measurement issues and their policy significance.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescriptio...
Additional Information: © 2012 Elsevier
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Journal of Economic Literature Classification System: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I1 - Health > I18 - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
Sets: Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Research centres and groups > LSE Health
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2012 10:39
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/44305/

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