Health and poverty: Past, present and prospects for the future

Najman, JM (1993) Health and poverty: Past, present and prospects for the future. Social Science and Medicine, 36 2: 157-166. doi:10.1016/0277-9536(93)90207-K

Author Najman, JM
Title Health and poverty: Past, present and prospects for the future
Journal name Social Science and Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0277-9536
Publication date 1993
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/0277-9536(93)90207-K
Volume 36
Issue 2
Start page 157
End page 166
Total pages 10
Language eng
Subject 2002 Cultural Studies
2739 Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
3207 Social Psychology
3303 Development
3306 Health (social science)
1900 Earth and Planetary Sciences
2300 Environmental Science
Abstract Periodically the results of class comparisons in mortality rates have been reported. These reports have permitted comparisons since the earlier part of this century to the present period. The data thus available enables us to make some tentative predictions about the likely magnitude of class inequalities in mortality in the future. We consequently argue that: • -the concept of class should be abandoned in favour of a more direct measure of economic inequality which emphasises those living in poverty. • -despite overall declines in mortality for all socioeconomic groups, in the most recent period there has been an increase in the relative mortality disadvantage in some countries. • -this increase in mortality disadvantage is paralleled by an increase in the proportion of people, particularly children, living in poverty. Five groups constitute the bulk of those living in poverty and, of these, three (single mothers, the aged and the disabled) are likely to increase in numbers in the future, producing a likely increase in class-related mortality inequalities. Reducing these inequalities will depend upon welfare and education initiatives more than on any changes likely to be produced by the health system.
Keyword aged
demographic trends in poverty
ethnic/racial minorities
mortality trends
single mother
social class
the disabled
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
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