Childhood and Adult Socioeconomic Status and Self-Rated Health in Korea

Irma T. Elo, University of Pennsylvania
YeonJin Lee, University of Pennsylvania

In this paper we investigate the associations between childhood SES and self-rated health, whether these associations are indirect operating through attained adult SES, and whether the associations between childhood and adult SES and self-rated health differ among men and women using a nationally representative survey data collected in Korea in 2003. Many prior studies on SES and health have focused on western societies but these findings may not be generalizable to non-western contexts. For example, SES is positively associated with healthy lifestyles in many western countries, while this relationship has not always been found in non-western societies. Representing countries that have experienced rapid changes in economic development and demographic transition during last few decades, Korea provides an interesting case in which we can gain additional insights into whether the SES-health relationship may vary by context.

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Presented in Session 16: Life Course Influences on Health and Mortality in International Perspective