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Correcting the Concentration Index for Binary Variables

This paper discusses measurement of socioeconomic inequalities in prevalence of a health condition. As its point of departure, it uses the recent exchange between Guido Erreygers and Adam Wagstaff in this journal, where they discuss merits of their own corrections of the frequently used concentration index. The paper first reconciles the debate between Erreygers and Wagstaff and discusses the value judgments that are hidden behind their indices. Secondly, it discusses when the property level independence is desirable. Thirdly, it empirically illustrates whether and when the choice of index affects comparisons between contexts using binary health indicators from the European Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement (SHARE). The results show that choice of index matters and that it not only affects the magnitude of measured inequalities but also internal ranking between countries.

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File URL: http://project.nek.lu.se/publications/workpap/papers/WP11_4.pdf
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Paper provided by Lund University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2011:4.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 20 Jan 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published as Kjellsson, Gustav and Ulf-G Gerdtham, 'On Correcting the Concentration Index for Binary Variables' in Journal of Health Economcs, 2013, pages 659-670.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:lunewp:2011_004
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Lund University, Box 7082, S-220 07 Lund,Sweden
Phone: +46 +46 222 0000
Fax: +46 +46 2224613
Web page: http://www.nek.lu.se/en

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  1. Clarke, Philip M. & Gerdtham, Ulf-G. & Johannesson, Magnus & Bingefors, Kerstin & Smith, Len, 2002. "On the measurement of relative and absolute income-related health inequality," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 55(11), pages 1923-1928, December.
  2. van Doorslaer, Eddy & Gerdtham, Ulf-G., 2003. "Does inequality in self-assessed health predict inequality in survival by income? Evidence from Swedish data," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 57(9), pages 1621-1629, November.
  3. Hernández-Quevedo, Cristina & Jones, Andrew M. & López-Nicolás, Angel & Rice, Nigel, 2006. "Socioeconomic inequalities in health: A comparative longitudinal analysis using the European Community Household Panel," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 63(5), pages 1246-1261, September.
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