Inequality Aversion, Health Inequalities, and Health Achievement

26 Pages Posted: 10 Jan 2017

See all articles by Adam Wagstaff

Adam Wagstaff

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: January 31, 2002


The author addresses two issues. First, how can health inequalities be measured so as to take into account policymakers' attitudes toward inequality? The Gini coefficient and the related concentration index embody one particular set of value judgments. Generalizing these indexes allows alternative sets of value judgments to be reflected. And second, how can information on health inequality be combined with information on the mean of the relevant distribution to obtain an overall measure of health "achievement?" Applying the approach developed by Wagstaff shows how much worse some countries perform when the focus switches from average health to an achievement index that also reflects the health gap between the poor and the better-off.

Keywords: Health Systems Development & Reform, Public Health Promotion, Health Monitoring & Evaluation, Early Child and Children's Health, Disease Control & Prevention, Inequality, Governance Indicators, Agricultural Knowledge and Information Systems, Regional Rural Development, Health Monitoring & Evaluation

Suggested Citation

Wagstaff, Adam, Inequality Aversion, Health Inequalities, and Health Achievement (January 31, 2002). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 2765. Available at SSRN:

Adam Wagstaff (Contact Author)

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG) ( email )

1818 H. Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States


Register to save articles to
your library


Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics