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Inequality and Infant and Childhood Mortality in the United States in the Twentieth Century

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  • Michael R. Haines

Abstract

This paper deals with the issue of using infant and childhood mortality as an indicator of inequality. The case is that of the United States in the 20th century. Using microdata from the 1900 and 1910 Integrated Public Use Microsamples (IPUMS), published data from the Birth Registration Area in the 1920s, results from a number of surveys, and the Linked Birth & Infant Death Files from the National Center for Health Statistics for 1991, infant and child mortality can be related to such other variables as occupation of father or mother, education of father or mother, family income, race, ethnicity, and residence. The evidence shows that, although there have been large absolute reductions in the level of infant and child mortality rates and also a reduction in the absolute levels of differences across socioeconomic groups, relative inequality has not diminished over the 20th century.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16133.

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Date of creation: Jun 2010
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16133

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  1. Samuel H. Preston & Michael R. Haines, 1991. "Fatal Years: Child Mortality in Late Nineteenth-Century America," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number pres91-1, octubre-d.
  2. Hicks, Norman & Streeten, Paul, 1979. "Indicators of development: The search for a basic needs yardstick," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 7(6), pages 567-580, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Bengtsson, Tommy & van Poppel, Frans, 2011. "Socioeconomic inequalities in death from past to present: An introduction," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 343-356, July.
  2. Dora Costa, 2013. "Health and the Economy in the United States, from 1750 to the Present," NBER Working Papers 19685, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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