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A general method for decomposing the causes of socioeconomic inequality in health

Author

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  • Heckley, Gawain
  • Gerdtham, Ulf-G.
  • Kjellsson, Gustav

Abstract

We introduce a general decomposition method applicable to all forms of bivariate rank dependent indices of socioeconomic inequality in health, including the concentration index. The technique is based on recentered influence function regression and requires only the application of OLS to a transformed variable with similar interpretation. Our method requires few identifying assumptions to yield valid estimates in most common empirical applications, unlike current methods favoured in the literature. Using the Swedish Twin Registry and a within twin pair fixed effects identification strategy, our new method finds no evidence of a causal effect of education on income-related health inequality.

Suggested Citation

  • Heckley, Gawain & Gerdtham, Ulf-G. & Kjellsson, Gustav, 2016. "A general method for decomposing the causes of socioeconomic inequality in health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 89-106.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jhecon:v:48:y:2016:i:c:p:89-106
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2016.03.006
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
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    Cited by:

    1. Roselinde Kessels & Guido Erreygers, 2016. "Structural equation modeling for decomposing rank-dependent indicators of socioeconomic inequality of health: an empirical study," Health Economics Review, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 1-13, December.
    2. Gustav Kjellsson & Dennis Petrie & Tom (T.G.M.) van Ourti, 2018. "Measuring income-related inequalities in risky health prospects," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 18-007/V, Tinbergen Institute.
    3. repec:spr:hecrev:v:7:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1186_s13561-017-0155-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Spika, Devon & Heckley, Gawain & Gerdtham, Ulf-G., 2018. "What Do Demographics Have To Do With It? An Oaxaca-Blinder Decomposition of Changes over Time in Inequalities in Alcohol, Narcotics and Tobacco-Related Ill Health in Sweden," Working Papers 2018:27, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    5. repec:bla:ecorec:v:94:y:2018:i:304:p:39-50 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Alexander Silbersdorff & Julia Lynch & Stephan Klasen & Thomas Kneib, 2017. "Reconsidering the Income-Illness Relationship Using Distributional Regression: An Application to Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 931, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    7. Linder, Anna & Spika, Devon & Gerdtham, Ulf-G. & Fritzell, Sara & Heckley, Gawain, 2018. "Mental Health and Its Socioeconomic Inequality in Sweden: The Role of Demographic Changes over Time," Working Papers 2018:26, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    8. Heckley, Gawain & Nordin, Martin & Gerdtham, Ulf-G., 2018. "Could Easier Access to University Improve Health and Reduce Health Inequalities?," Working Papers 2018:5, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    9. Christiansen, Terkel & Lauridsen, Jørgen T., 2016. "Dynamic Changes in Determinants of Inequalities in Health in Europe with Focus on Retired - with Particular Regard to Retired Danes," COHERE Working Paper 2016:8, University of Southern Denmark, COHERE - Centre of Health Economics Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Inequality measurement; Concentration index; Decomposition methods; Recentered influence function;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General

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