Evidence from the 2001 English Census on the contribution of employment status to the social gradient in self-rated health

Popham, F. and Bambra, C. (2010) Evidence from the 2001 English Census on the contribution of employment status to the social gradient in self-rated health. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 64(3), pp. 277-280. (doi:10.1136/jech.2009.087452)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech.2009.087452

Abstract

Background Unemployment and economic inactivity are associated with poor health. There are social gradients in unemployment and economic inactivity, so it was hypothesised that they may contribute to the social gradient in self-rated health.

Methods Data on employment status, socio-economic position (SEP) and self-rated heath were obtained for people of working age (25–59) who had ever worked from a 3% sample of the 2001 English census. The age-adjusted prevalence differences in poor general health for four separate measures of SEP were compared with the prevalence differences obtained after additional adjustment for employment status.

Results Prevalence differences for poor health were reduced by 50% or over when adjusting for employment status (for men ranging from 57% to 81%, for women 50% to 74%).

Discussion The social gradient in employment status contributes greatly to the social gradient in self-reported health. Understanding why this is the case could be important for tackling social inequalities in health.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Popham, Dr Timothy
Authors: Popham, F., and Bambra, C.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO Unit
Journal Name:Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health
Publisher:BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN:0143-005X
ISSN (Online):1470-2738
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