Skip to content

Journal Article

Social dynamics of health inequalities: a growth curve analysis of aging and self assessed health in the British Household Panel Survey 1999-2001

Authors

Publication date

2005

Abstract

Objectives: To study how social inequalities change as people age, this paper presents a growth curve model of self assessed health, which accommodates changes in occupational class and individual health with age.
Design: Nationally representative interview based longitudinal survey of adults in Great Britain.
Setting: Representative members of private households of Great Britain in 1991.
Participants: Survey respondents (n = 6705), aged 21-59 years in 1991 and followed up annually until 2001.
Main outcome measure: Self assessed health.
Results: On average, self assessed health declines slowly from early adulthood to retirement age. No significant class differences in health were observed at age 21. Health inequalities emerged later in life with the gap between mean levels of self assessed health of those in managerial and professional occupations and routine occupations widening approaching retirement. Individual variability in health trajectories increased between ages 40 and 59 years so that this widening of mean differences between occupational classes was not significant. When the analysis is confined to people whose occupational class remained constant over time, a far greater difference in health trajectories between occupational classes was seen.
Conclusions: The understanding of social inequalities in health at the population level is enriched by an analysis of individual variation in age related declines by social position.

Published in

Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health

Volume

59 (6):495-501

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech.2004.026278

Subjects

Health and Social Stratification

Links

http://serlib0.essex.ac.uk/record=b1643829~S5

Notes

Albert Sloman Library Periodicals *restricted to Univ. Essex registered users*

#508010


Research home

Research home

News

Latest findings, new research

Publications search

Search all research by subject and author

Podcasts

Researchers discuss their findings and what they mean for society

Projects

Background and context, methods and data, aims and outputs

Events

Conferences, seminars and workshops

Survey methodology

Specialist research, practice and study

Taking the long view

ISER's annual report

Themes

Key research themes and areas of interest