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Relative deprivation in income and self-rated health in the United States

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  • Subramanyam, Malavika
  • Kawachi, Ichiro
  • Berkman, Lisa
  • Subramanian, S.V.
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    Abstract

    Absolute income is robustly associated with health status. Few studies have, however, examined if relative income is independently associated with health. We examined if, over and above the effects of absolute income, individual relative deprivation in income as well as position in the income hierarchy is associated with individual poor health in the U.S. Using three rounds of the Current Population Surveys (CPS), we analyzed the association between self-rated health (1Â =Â fair/poor, 0Â =Â otherwise) and the Yitzhaki index of relative deprivation in income and percentile position in the income hierarchy across 17 reference groups. Over and above the effects of absolute income, the odds ratio for reporting poor health among individuals in the highest quintile of relative deprivation compared to the lowest quintile ranged between 2.18 and 3.30, depending on the reference groups used. A 10 percentile increase in income position within reference groups was associated with an odds ratio of poor health of 0.89. Relative deprivation appeared to explain between 33 and 94% of the association between individual income and self-rated health. Relative deprivation in income is independently associated with poor health over and above the well established effects of absolute income on health. Relative deprivation may partly explain the association between income inequality and worse population health status.

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    Bibliographic Info

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

    Volume (Year): 69 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 3 (August)
    Pages: 327-334

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:69:y:2009:i:3:p:327-334

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    Keywords: United States (U.S.) Poor self-rated health Relative deprivation Yitzhaki index Rank Social comparison Social hierarchy Income;

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    Cited by:
    1. Adjaye-Gbewonyo, Kafui & Kawachi, Ichiro, 2012. "Use of the Yitzhaki Index as a test of relative deprivation for health outcomes: A review of recent literature," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 129-137.
    2. Elgar, Frank J. & De Clercq, Bart & Schnohr, Christina W. & Bird, Phillippa & Pickett, Kate E. & Torsheim, Torbjørn & Hofmann, Felix & Currie, Candace, 2013. "Absolute and relative family affluence and psychosomatic symptoms in adolescents," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 25-31.
    3. Grönqvist, Hans & Johansson, Per & Niknami, Susan, 2012. "Income inequality and health: lessons from a refugee residential assignment program," Working Paper Series 2012:11, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    4. Oshio, Takashi & Umeda, Maki & Fujii, Mayu, 2012. "The association between income dynamics and subjective well-being: Evidence from career income records in Japan," CIS Discussion paper series 564, Center for Intergenerational Studies, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
    5. Maite Blázquez Cuesta & Elena Cottini & Herrarte, A. (Ainhoa), 2012. "GINI DP 39: Socioeconomic Gradient in Health: How Important is Material Deprivation?," GINI Discussion Papers 39, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.
    6. Maite Blázquez & Elena Cottini & Ainhoa Herrarte, 2014. "The socioeconomic gradient in health: how important is material deprivation?," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 239-264, June.
    7. Heshmati, Almas & Rudolf, Robert, 2013. "Income vs. Consumption Inequality in South Korea: Evaluating Stochastic Dominance Rankings by Various Household Attributes," IZA Discussion Papers 7731, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Maite Blázquez Cuesta & Santiago Budría, 2013. "Does income deprivation affect people’s mental well-being?," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1312, Banco de Espa�a.
    9. Miething, Alexander, 2013. "A matter of perception: Exploring the role of income satisfaction in the income–mortality relationship in German survey data 1995–2010," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 72-79.
    10. Modrek, Sepideh & Dow, William H. & Rosero-Bixby, Luis, 2012. "Long-term association of economic inequality and mortality in adult Costa Ricans," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 158-166.
    11. Kuo, Chun-Tung & Chiang, Tung-liang, 2013. "The association between relative deprivation and self-rated health, depressive symptoms, and smoking behavior in Taiwan," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 39-44.

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