Chapter

Chile: Socioeconomic Differentials and Mortality in a Middle-Income Nation

JEANETTE VEGA, ROLF DIETER HOLLSTEIN, IRIS DELGADO, JUAN C. PEREZ, SEBASTIAN CARRASCO, GUILLERMO MARSHALL and DEREK YACH

in Challenging Inequities in Health

Published in print July 2001 | ISBN: 9780195137408
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780199863983 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195137408.003.0010
Chile: Socioeconomic Differentials and Mortality in a Middle-Income Nation

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In Chile, rapid social and economic change combined with relatively high-quality health data provides an important opportunity to study the relationship between socioeconomic status and mortality in a middle-income country. This chapter shows that despite overall economic growth and improvement in aggregate health status, health inequalities are large and widening in Chile. The increase is temporally related to broadening income inequalities associated with the structural economic reforms and marketization begun in 1981. Not only was Chile the first country in the American region to embark on a structural economic reform process, but its reform program has also been the most radical. This intensity persisted until the demise of Pinochet's military government and the arrival of democracy in 1990. In the light of the changing macroeconomic context, the chapter examines recent evidence on the factors underlying health inequalities in Chile through both individual-level and ecological-level analyses.

Keywords: Chile; socioeconomic inequalities; mortality; economic reforms

Chapter.  7850 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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