A 'Health Kuznets' Curve'? Cross-Country and Longitudinal Evidence
21 Pages Posted: 2 Nov 2013
Date Written: September 1, 2015
The distribution of income related health inequalities appear to exhibit varying patterns when developing countries and developed countries are examined. One explanation is the existence of a health Kuznets’ curve. This paper sets out as an exploratory analysis to test the hypothesis of an inverse U shape pattern between both economic development (as measured by GDP per capita) and income inequalities in health (as measured by concentration indices). We draw upon two datasets, the World Health Survey and the European Community household survey. Our results show that income-related inequalities in self-reported health rise but tail off once a threshold level of economic development has been attained. Thus, there is a health Kuznets’ curve on per capita income, with a polynomial association where the tipping point lies around $26,000 to $38,700.
Keywords: concentration indices, self-reported health, health inequalities, Kuznets’ curve, income related health inequalities
JEL Classification: I180, O100, I300
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation