Subjective financial well-being, income and health inequalities in mid and later life in Britain
The relationship between health and income is well established, but the link between subjective financial well-being and self-reported health has been relatively ignored. This study investigates the relationship between income, subjective financial well-being and health in mid-life and later life in Britain. Analysis of the General Household Survey for 2006 examined these relationships at ages 45–64 (n = 4639) and 65 and over (n = 3104). Logistic regression analysis was used to adjust for income and other socio-economic factors associated with self-reported health. Both income and subjective financial well-being are independently associated with health in mid-life; those with lower incomes and greater subjective financial difficulties had higher risk of reporting ‘less than good’ health. In contrast in later life, subjective financial well-being was associated with health, but the effect of income on health was mediated entirely through subjective financial well-being. The poorer health of the divorced/separated was also entirely mediated by differences in subjective financial well-being. Research on health inequalities should pay greater attention to the link between subjective financial hardship and ill-health, especially during periods of greater economic difficulties and financial austerity.
Volume (Year): 100 (2014)
Issue (Month): C ()
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