Has Mortality Risen Disproportionately for the Least Educated?

59 Pages Posted: 14 Jul 2020 Last revised: 5 Mar 2021

See all articles by Adam Leive

Adam Leive

University of Virginia

Christopher J. Ruhm

University of Virginia - Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: July 2020

Abstract

We examine whether the least educated population groups experienced the worst mortality trends during the 21st century by measuring changes in mortality across education quartiles. We document sharply differing gender patterns. Among women, mortality trends improved fairly monotonically with education. Conversely, male trends for the lowest three education quartiles were often similar. For both sexes, the gap in average mortality between the top 25 percent and the bottom 75 percent is growing. However, there are many groups for whom these average patterns are reversed – with better experiences for the less educated – or where the differences are statistically indistinguishable.

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Suggested Citation

Leive, Adam and Ruhm, Christopher J., Has Mortality Risen Disproportionately for the Least Educated? (July 2020). NBER Working Paper No. w27512, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3649876

Adam Leive (Contact Author)

University of Virginia ( email )

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Christopher J. Ruhm

University of Virginia - Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy ( email )

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