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Collection Conditions and Self-Rated Health: An Analysis of European Data


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  • Andrew E. Clark


  • Augustin Vicard



Self-rated health is only a biased reflection of real health. However, it is difficult to isolate and assess this bias. In particular, to what extent does the information collected depended on the collection conditions, given that these vary considerably between countries and surveys? The resources in the Share database enable us to analyse two collection method effects: the position of the subjective health question in the questionnaire and the wording of the suggested response modalities. Both effects have an impact: the average level of health, the distribution of states of health and links between health and other variables are altered when the collection conditions change. The positioning effect is homogenous within all countries. The wording of the suggested response modalities also changes the measure of self-rated health. For example, Sweden appears to be the healthiest country using the initial wording, but moves down to fifth place using a second wording.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Institut National de la Statistique et des Etudes Economiques in its journal Economie et Statistique.

Volume (Year): 403-404 (2007)
Issue (Month): (December)
Pages: 143-163

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Handle: RePEc:crs:ecosta:es403-404h

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Related research

Keywords: Self-Reported Health; Framing Effects; International Health Rankings;

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  1. Crossley, Thomas F. & Kennedy, Steven, 2002. "The reliability of self-assessed health status," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 643-658, July.
  2. Paul Dourgnon & Salim Lardjane, 2007. "Les comparaisons internationales d'état de santé subjectif sont-elles pertinentes ? Une évaluation par la méthode des vignettes-étalons," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 403(1), pages 165-177.
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