Poverty, Inequality, and Health: An International Perspective
Reviewed by: William A. Satariano American Journal of Epidemiology Vol. 154, No. 6 : 588-589 September 15, 2001 Copyright by The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health "......... .....A number of methodological issues are considered. These topics include the interaction between socioeconomic factors and health status over the life course of persons and populations; the measurement of health and the growing interest in alternative health outcomes, such as mental illness and injuries; and differences in the availability of longitudinal data on socioeconomic factors and health across developed and developing nations. The relation between ethics, policy, and science is given special attention. Several of the chapters focus on the distinctions and connections between inequality (social and economic disparity) and inequity (injustice and unequal access). Moreover, Leon and Walt write, "Our view is that health inequalities and inequities are ultimately ethical issues: a perspective that is implicit throughout this book: Working towards the elimination of absolute poverty and the adverse health consequences that accompany it, is essentially to be justified on moral grounds not in terms of economic return" (2, p. 2). It is not surprising, therefore, that strategies to reduce socioeconomic and health disparities are addressed in considerable detail. Evidence is provided, for example, that social and economic development does not ensure a reduction in health disparities; specific efforts to improve health status must be made.........."