Health Status Adjustment and Income-Related Inequality in Health Care Delivery

  • Alex Y. Chen
  • José J. Escarce


The literature on equity in health care delivery agrees that adjusting for “medical need” is a necessary component in assessing whether the delivery of care is equitable, that is, whether it varies with ability to pay. To date, most studies measuring income-related inequality in the delivery of health care have employed crude measures of health status to adjust for medical need and have acknowledged this as a limitation. This study examines how using more complete health status measures affects estimates of income-related inequality for U.S. adults. The findings suggest that previous studies may understate the extent of pro-rich inequality.


MEPS inequality health status adjustment 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Research on Children, Youth, and FamiliesChildren’s Hospital Los AngelesLos Angeles
  2. 2.Division of General Internal Medicine and Health Services ResearchDavid Geffen School of Medicine at UCLALos Angeles, California; RAND Health, Santa Monica

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