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Socioeconomic Differences in Old Age MortalityMeasures

Socioeconomic Differences in Old Age Mortality: Measures Chapter 6 6.1 Measures of Predictors An empirical study of the relationship between health or mortality and socioeco- nomic status has the task of finding an operationalization of the latter, based on a definition of socioeconomic status or social class. The conceptualization of social class is often rather vague in the literature. In addition to the definition of socioe- conomic status that was proposed in Section 3.8, this section gives an overview of different ways to operationalize this concept. It is not trivial to remind oneself that measurable items like income and years of schooling are only indicators for the larger background concept of social status (Elkeles and Mielck 1997). These items are either intermediary steps in the causal chain between socioeconomic status and health and mortality or they determine the social status together with other factors. Therefore they can only account for a part of the entire socioeconomic status (Marmot 2000:364). In other words, income, occupation or education each represents a different dimension of socioeconomic status (Kunst et al. 1998a:478). Maybe even socioeconomic status is only a proxy for something that really influences health and mortality and which we do not yet know (Link and Phelan 1995:84). If http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png

Socioeconomic Differences in Old Age MortalityMeasures

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
© Springer Netherlands 2008
ISBN
978-1-4020-8691-5
Pages
115 –128
DOI
10.1007/978-1-4020-8692-2_7
Publisher site
See Chapter on Publisher Site

Abstract

Chapter 6 6.1 Measures of Predictors An empirical study of the relationship between health or mortality and socioeco- nomic status has the task of finding an operationalization of the latter, based on a definition of socioeconomic status or social class. The conceptualization of social class is often rather vague in the literature. In addition to the definition of socioe- conomic status that was proposed in Section 3.8, this section gives an overview of different ways to operationalize this concept. It is not trivial to remind oneself that measurable items like income and years of schooling are only indicators for the larger background concept of social status (Elkeles and Mielck 1997). These items are either intermediary steps in the causal chain between socioeconomic status and health and mortality or they determine the social status together with other factors. Therefore they can only account for a part of the entire socioeconomic status (Marmot 2000:364). In other words, income, occupation or education each represents a different dimension of socioeconomic status (Kunst et al. 1998a:478). Maybe even socioeconomic status is only a proxy for something that really influences health and mortality and which we do not yet know (Link and Phelan 1995:84). If

Published: Jan 1, 2008

Keywords: Socioeconomic Status; Social Capital; Social Status; Rate Ratio; Mortality Difference

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