Socio-economic inequalities in mortality persist into old age in New Zealand: study of all 65 years plus, 2001-04

Jatrana, Santosh, and Blakely, Tony (2014) Socio-economic inequalities in mortality persist into old age in New Zealand: study of all 65 years plus, 2001-04. Ageing and Society, 34 (6). pp. 911-929.

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Abstract

A number of studies have explored the relationship between socio-economic status and mortality, although these have mostly been based on the working-age population, despite the fact that the burden of mortality is highest in older people. Using Poisson regression on linked New Zealand census and mortality data (2001-04, 1.3 million person years) with a comprehensive set of socio-economic indicators (education, income, car access, housing tenure, neighourhood deprivation), we examined the association of socio-economic characteristics and older adult mortality (65+ years) in New Zealand. We found that socio-economic mortality gradients persist into old age. Substantial relative risks of mortality were observed for all socio-economic factors, except housing tenure. Most relative risk associations decreased in strength with ageing [e.g. most deprived compared to least deprived rate ratio for males reducing from 1.40 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.28-1.53) for 65-74-year-olds to 1.13 (CI 1.00-1.28) for 85Ǎ +Ǎ -year-olds], except for income and education among women where the rate ratios changed little with increasing age. This suggests individual-level measures of socio-economic status are more closely related to mortality in older women than older men. Comparing across genders, the only statistically significantly different association between men and women was for a weaker association for women for car access.

Item ID: 62591
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1469-1779
Keywords: ageing, elderly, mortality, New Zealand, socio-economic status
Copyright Information: © Cambridge University Press 2013.
Date Deposited: 08 Dec 2021 01:12
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4202 Epidemiology > 420210 Social epidemiology @ 60%
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420606 Social determinants of health @ 40%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2002 Evaluation of health and support services > 200204 Health inequalities @ 60%
20 HEALTH > 2004 Public health (excl. specific population health) > 200407 Health status (incl. wellbeing) @ 40%
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