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Socioeconomic Differences in Old Age MortalitySocioeconomic Differences in Health and Mortality

Socioeconomic Differences in Old Age Mortality: Socioeconomic Differences in Health and Mortality Chapter 4 Socioeconomic Differences in Health and Mortality 4.1 Socioeconomic Differences in Health The finding that lower classes have worse health is widely accepted as a fact (Lundberg 1991a; Townsend and Davidson 1992; Thorslund and Lundberg 1994; Mackenbach and Kunst 1997). Likewise, Vager ˚ o ¨ and Illsley (1995:220) state: ... it is almost universally agreed in the academic literature that social class differences in health are real, a property of social relations in all societies, and not the by-product of measurement errors or errors of definition. Measurement problems may affect the size and pattern of differences but do not cast doubt on their existence. Whereas nowadays socioeconomic health differences are taken as a universal and persistent phenomenon, some decades ago there were different opinions about the possible chances for improvement: “... there is every indication that in modern Western countries, the relationship between social class and the prevalence of illness is certainly decreasing and most probably no longer exists” (Kadushin 1966:410). Moreover, the reduction of health inequalities has not taken place and is still an aim of social policy. The Word Health Organization (WHO) has proposed the “health for all” target for countries in the European region. “By http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png

Socioeconomic Differences in Old Age MortalitySocioeconomic Differences in Health and Mortality

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
© Springer Netherlands 2008
ISBN
978-1-4020-8691-5
Pages
57 –101
DOI
10.1007/978-1-4020-8692-2_5
Publisher site
See Chapter on Publisher Site

Abstract

Chapter 4 Socioeconomic Differences in Health and Mortality 4.1 Socioeconomic Differences in Health The finding that lower classes have worse health is widely accepted as a fact (Lundberg 1991a; Townsend and Davidson 1992; Thorslund and Lundberg 1994; Mackenbach and Kunst 1997). Likewise, Vager ˚ o ¨ and Illsley (1995:220) state: ... it is almost universally agreed in the academic literature that social class differences in health are real, a property of social relations in all societies, and not the by-product of measurement errors or errors of definition. Measurement problems may affect the size and pattern of differences but do not cast doubt on their existence. Whereas nowadays socioeconomic health differences are taken as a universal and persistent phenomenon, some decades ago there were different opinions about the possible chances for improvement: “... there is every indication that in modern Western countries, the relationship between social class and the prevalence of illness is certainly decreasing and most probably no longer exists” (Kadushin 1966:410). Moreover, the reduction of health inequalities has not taken place and is still an aim of social policy. The Word Health Organization (WHO) has proposed the “health for all” target for countries in the European region. “By

Published: Jan 1, 2008

Keywords: Socioeconomic Status; Social Capital; Income Inequality; Health Inequality; Social Inequality

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