How Do the Better Educated Do It? Socioeconomic Status and the Ability to Cope with Underlying Impairment
AbstractThere is a pronounced gradient in disability across socioeconomic groups, with better educated and higher income groups reporting substantially less disability. In this paper, we consider why that is the case, focusing on impairments in basic physical and cognitive aspects of living for the elderly. Our empirical work has two parts. First, we consider how much of this gradient in disability is a result of underlying differences in functioning versus the ability to cope with impairments. We show differences in functioning are the major part of the difference in disability, but both are important. Second, we consider how the better educated elderly cope with disability. Better educated people use substantially more assistive technology than the less educated and are more likely to use paid help. But use of these services is not the primary reason that the better educated are better able to cope. We conclude with thoughts about other potential factors that may explain differential coping.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12040.
Date of creation: Feb 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as "How Do The Better Educated Do It? Socioeconomic Status and Ability to Cope with Underlying Impairment," forthcoming in D. Wise, ed., Developments in the Economics of Aging, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2009 (with Mary Beth Landrum and Kate Stewart).
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Other versions of this item:
- David M. Cutler & Mary Beth Landrum & Kate A. Stewart, 2009. "How Do The Better Educated Do It? Socioeconomic Status and the Ability to Cope With Underlying Impairment," NBER Chapters, in: Developments in the Economics of Aging, pages 203-248 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-02-26 (All new papers)
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