Transition gap in self-rated health
Previous literature has shown substantially lower levels of self-reported health in transition countries compared to developed and developing countries. The current paper provides the most recent estimates of the size of the transition gap in self-rated health by using up to 241,698 observations from the World Values Survey (WVS) and the European Values Study (EVS) collected between 1989 and 2014. During the earlier transition period of 1989–2007 transition countries were 0.088 to 0.127 lower on a 0 to 1 scale (from ‘Very poor’ to ‘Very good’ self-rated health). The transition gap remains in place in the second period after the Asian crisis (0.069 to 0.094 lower self-rated health) and even after the Global financial crisis of 2008 (0.062 to 0.105 lower self-rated health). Judging from these estimates the process of transition is far from completion at least based on a subjective evaluation of health, which is one of the key determinants of human development. It is also plausible that poor self-perceived health may ‘justify’ abnormally high health-care utilization and an excessive (and expensive) network of physicians and hospital beds per capita still characterizing transition countries.
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