Global Health Inequalities: An International Comparison

Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 2006

10 Pages Posted: 4 Dec 2006  

Jennifer Prah Ruger

University of Pennsylvania


Objective: To study cross-national inequalities in mortality of adults and of children aged <5 years using a novel approach, with clustering techniques to stratify countries into mortality groups (better-off, worse-off, mid-level) and to examine risk factors associated with inequality. Design, setting and participants: Analysis of data from the World Development Indicators 2003 database, compiled by the World Bank. Main outcome measures: Adult and child mortality among countries placed into distinct mortality categories by cluster analysis. Conclusions: Inequalities in child and adult mortality are large, are growing, and are related to several economic, social and health sector variables. Global efforts to deal with this problem require attention to the worse-off countries, geographic concentrations, and adopt multidimensional approaches to development.

Keywords: health inequalities, country comparison, development, World Bank, mortality, economics

JEL Classification: I10, I11, I12, I18, I31, H87

Suggested Citation

Prah Ruger, Jennifer, Global Health Inequalities: An International Comparison. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 2006. Available at SSRN:

Jennifer Prah Ruger (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania ( email )

Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

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