Health inequality across time: a growth curve analysis of self assessed health in contemporary Switzerland

Della Bella, Sara and Lucchini, Mario and Assi, Jenny (2012) Health inequality across time: a growth curve analysis of self assessed health in contemporary Switzerland. Swiss Journal of Sociology, 38 (2). pp. 291-309.

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Abstract

Although many studies have shown the persistence of the social gradient in health, previous explanations in this domain are often questionable because they usually assume this gradient to be constant across time and are based on data and models that are unable to correctly estimate what is essentially a developmental process. Different hypotheses regarding the relationship over time between health and socio-economic status have been proposed and need to be tested. This study uses longitudinal data from the Swiss Household Panel to examine individual health trajectories over time. Our results only confirm a reduction of the heterogeneity in the individual health trajectories across income as people age (at least in younger cohorts), although data limitations suggest some caution.

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