People Consortium Meeting and Public Hearing
"Building the Next Generation of Healthy People"
November 12 and 13, 1998
Capital Hilton, Washington, D.C.
Socioeconomic Status and
Key Themes Emerging from Discussion
Greater precision in assessing SES is obtained by measuring
income as a 3-step (or more) gradient, rather than as a dichotomous configuration of two
groups, one above, the other at or below the official poverty level.
Of all questions on survey forms, respondents show most
reluctance in answering those about SES.
Controlling for SES in data collection does not account for
all disparities among population groups; some racial and ethnic differences still persist.
The greatest difficulty in assessing SES by gradient levels
comes in separating out the lower levels. Eligibility requirements for public assistance
complicate the picture.
The draft 2010 document makes heavy demands for additional
data collection and should serve to drive research, but it largely ignores health policy