Socioeconomic Status, Health, and Mortality among Older Adults in Mexico

Kimberly V Smith, Princeton University

Despite a myriad of studies documenting the relationship between socioeconomic status (SES) and health, several questions remain about the strength and pattern of this association across populations. This paper responds to three: (1) does the effect of SES diminish or disappear at older ages?, (2) does the strength and pattern of the SES-health relationship vary by level of socioeconomic development and cultural context?, and (3) how do the health effects of SES vary by sex and level of urbanization in a developing country context? This study builds on recent attempts to expand our understanding of the extent to which education and economic status are associated with health among older adults in developing countries. It utilizes the Mexican Health and Aging Study (MHAS), a nationally-representative panel study of adults aged 50 and older, to examine the relationship between several SES indicators and a variety of health measures in Mexico.

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Presented in Poster Session 5: Health, Mortality, Aging, Biology