Socioeconomic Status and Health: Focusing on Co-Morbidity of Self-Rated Health and Psychological Well-Being

Seung-Eun Song, University of Texas at Austin
Hyeyoung Woo, University of Texas at Austin

Despite the well-documented associations between social and economic positions and diverse health conditions, the necessity and urgency of exploring the social and economic consequences of an array of health dimensions together have been proposed as a critical area of research to fully appreciate socioeconomic-health inequalities. The overall objective of the present study is to estimate the variance and covariation of two dimensions of health, i.e., self-rated health and psychological well-being, simultaneously, with specific attention to the social and economic influences, utilizing the multivariate response model. We use the 2005 National Health Interview Survey. Primary results indicate that variance in both self-rated health and psychological distress becomes attenuated with the adjustment of social and economic status, although variation in each outcome remains unexplained to some substantial degree. In addition, there is a strong and positive relationship between these two health outcomes in that individuals who are unhealthy tend also to have poor psychological resources (correlation = .34) and the substantial portion of co-morbidity of these two health conditions is attributable to the social and economic factors (about 37%).

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Presented in Poster Session 6