The formation of mortality inequalities by education between 1986 and 2005. The Hungarian Case

Katalin Kovács, Demographic Research Institute, Budapest
László Hablicsek, Demographic Research Institute, Budapest

The aim of the study is to investigate the emergence of mortality inequalities by education in Hungary with special attention to distinguishing between the developments of the periods of economic crises (1986-1995) and economic stabilization (1996-2005). Annual mortality and population figures were used in a cross sectional design. The later were obtained by estimation between the censuses of 1980, 1990 and 2001 and by forecasting for the subsequent years. Standardized mortality rates and life expectancy at age 30 were calculated for the different educational groups. For the middle aged (30-64 years) cause-specific rates for cardiovascular diseases, ischemic heart disease, external and “treatable” causes, cancers and breast cancer were also calculated. To take the changes of the educational structure into account, inequality indicators were calculated. The difference in life expectancy at age 30 between men with elementary and tertiary education was 7.2 years in 1986- 90 and 11.3 in 2000-2004. The same figures for women were 2.8 and 6.3 years. Differences have grown at equal speed among men during the whole period. Among women differences in life expectancy did not increase till 1992-96. Considering overall mortality of the middle aged, rate ratios were growing at the same speed during the two distinguished periods for men. For women rate ratios grew slowly during the first, and quickly during the second period. Rate differences were growing dynamically for men in the first and stabilised in the second period. Rate differences grew at the same speed among women during the two periods. Index of dissimilarity showed a slow increase during the first, and a quick one during the second. Relative index of inequality provided the same picture. Development of inequalities was similar for the examined groups of causes of death, with some modification for external causes among men and ischaemic heart disease among women.

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Presented in Poster Session 1