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Measurement of Health, the Sensitivity of the Concentration Index, and Reporting Heterogeneity

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  • Nicolas R. Ziebarth

Abstract

Using representative survey data from the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) for 2006, we show that the magnitude of such health inequality measures as the concentration index (CI) depends crucially on the underlying health measure. The highest degree of inequality is found when dichotomized subjective health measures like health satisfaction or self-assessed health (SAH) are employed. Measures of medical care usage like doctor visits result in substantially lower concentration indices. Moreover, with the use of SF12, a generic health measure, the inequality indicator is reduced by a factor of ten. Scaling SAH by means of the SF12 leads to similar results to those with the pure SF12 measure. Employing generic health measures used with other populations like the Canadian HUI-III or the Finish 15D to cardinalize SAH has a significant impact on the degree of inequality measured. Finally, by contrasting the physical health component of the SF12 to the unambiguously objective grip strength measure, we provide evidence of the presence of income-related reporting heterogeneity in generic health measures.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 916.

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Length: 39 p.
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp916

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Keywords: health measures; health inequality; SF12; grip strength; German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP);

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References

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  1. Huber, Hélène, 2008. "Decomposing the causes of inequalities in health care use: A micro-simulations approach," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 1605-1613, December.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Peter Eibich, 2014. "Understanding the Effect of Retirement on Health Using Regression Discontinuity Design," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 669, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  2. Charles J. Courtemanche & Daniela Zapata, 2014. "Does Universal Coverage Improve Health? The Massachusetts Experience," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 33(1), pages 36-69, 01.
  3. Ziebarth, Nicolas R. & Frick, Joachim R., 2010. "Revisiting the Income-Health Nexus: The Importance of Choosing the "Right" Indicator," IZA Discussion Papers 4787, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Peter Eibich & Nicolas R. Ziebarth, 2013. "Analyzing Regional Variation in Health Care Utilization Using (Rich) Household Microdata," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 551, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  5. Jens Ambrasat & Jürgen Schupp & Gert G. Wagner, 2011. "Comparing the Predictive Power of Subjective and Objective Health Indicators: Changes in Hand Grip Strength and Overall Satisfaction with Life as Predictors of Mortality," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 398, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  6. P. Steca & A. Greco & M. D’Addario & D. Monzani & R. Pozzi & A. Villani & V. Rella & A. Giglio & G. Malfatto & G. Parati, 2013. "Relationship of Illness Severity with Health and Life Satisfaction in Patients with Cardiovascular Disease: The Mediating Role of Self-efficacy Beliefs and Illness Perceptions," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, Springer, vol. 14(5), pages 1585-1599, October.
  7. Pfarr, Christian & Schmid, Andreas & Schneider, Udo, 2011. "Reporting Heterogeneity in Self-Assessed Health among Elderly Europeans: The Impact of Mental and Physical Health Status," MPRA Paper 29900, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Peter Eibich & Nicolas R. Ziebarth, 2013. "Examining the Structure of Spatial Health Effects in Germany Using Hierarchical Bayes Models," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 620, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  9. Schneider, Julia & Beblo, Miriam, 2010. "Health at work - indicators and determinants : a revised literature and data review for Germany," IAB Discussion Paper 201017, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  10. Joachim Frick & Nicolas Ziebarth, 2013. "Welfare-related health inequality: does the choice of measure matter?," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 14(3), pages 431-442, June.
  11. Udo Schneider & Christian Pfarr & Brit Schneider & Volker Ulrich, 2012. "I feel good! Gender differences and reporting heterogeneity in self-assessed health," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 251-265, June.
  12. Timothy A. Weterings & Mark N. Harris & Bruce Hollingsworth, 2012. "Extending Unobserved Heterogeneity - A Strategy for Accounting for Respondent Perceptions in the Absence of Suitable Data," Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics 12/12, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics.

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