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The effect of point of reference on the association between self-rated health and mortality

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  • Manderbacka, Kristiina
  • Kåreholt, Ingemar
  • Martikainen, Pekka
  • Lundberg, Olle
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    Abstract

    This study examines the effect of point of reference on the predictive validity of self-rated health for mortality in a 5-year follow-up period. Two self-rated health measures are examined: an age group comparative question and a global question with no explicit point of reference. The baseline data (SweOld) is a nationally representative interview survey among Swedish people aged 77+ in 1992. Mortality for the 1992-1996 period was analysed using Cox proportional hazards regression models. Age-referential self-rated health was found to be a better predictor of elderly men's mortality both in non-adjusted models and in models adjusting for age and both self-rated health measures. In separate analyses, both measures were found to be equally strong predictors of women's mortality. When adding both measures into the model simultaneously, the age-referential question lost much of its predictive power. The findings suggest that self-rated health measures are not insensitive to differences in question wording.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.

    Volume (Year): 56 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 7 (April)
    Pages: 1447-1452

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:56:y:2003:i:7:p:1447-1452

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    Related research

    Keywords: Self-rated health Mortality Health measurement Sweden;

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    Cited by:
    1. Neil J Buckley & Frank T Denton & A Leslie Robb & Byron G Spencer, 2005. "Socioeconomic Influences on the Health of Older Canadians: Estimates Based on Two Longitudinal Surveys," Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers, McMaster University 139, McMaster University.
    2. Bakshi, Sanjeev & Pathak, Prasanta, 2010. "What makes them feel healthier? the correlates of self-perceived health among older adults in India," MPRA Paper 40541, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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