Sara Della Bella

Social Inequalities in Health in Italy: A Dynamic Analysis Using Echp Data

  • Abstract

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Keywords: social inequalities in health; self-assessed health; temporal dynamics of the educational gradient in health; Echp data; growth curves.

Despite great improvements in the quality and the duration of life, many studies have shown the persistence of social inequalities in health in European countries. Previous explanations in this domain usually assume this gradient to be constant across time and are based on data and models that are unable to correctly estimate what is essentially a developmental process. Different hypotheses regarding the relationship over time between health and socio-economic status (Ses) have been proposed. This work uses longitudinal data from the European household panel in order to examine individual health trajectories over time and to understand whether the protective effects of Ses on health varies with age. Our results suggest a reduction of the heterogeneity in the individual health trajectories across education and income as people age, although data limitations suggest some caution.

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