Trends in the Education-Mortality Gradient among Hispanics in the U.S.: Same Old Story or a Different Tune?

Jason R. Thomas, Pennsylvania State University
Jonathan Gonzalez, Pennsylvania State University

Higher education has been linked to lower mortality, and recent investigations show increasing disparities over the past few decades among non-Hispanic blacks and whites. However, very little work has been done to document how education differentials in mortality have evolved over time among Hispanics. Even less work has been done to link changes in health behaviors and risk factors to changes in the education gradient in mortality for Hispanics. The current study has two questions. First, is the education gradient in mortality changing over time for the Hispanic population in the U.S.? Second, how do obesity and smoking contribute to changes (or stability) in the education-mortality gradient? Using data from the National Health Interview Survey-Linked Mortality Files(19986-2006), we will adopt a descriptive approach that consists of plotting mortality rates by education-gender groups for different birth cohorts as they age in order to address changes in the education-mortality gradient over time.

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Presented in Session 188: Predictors of Survival, Mortality and Longevity