Understanding differences in income-related health inequality between geographic regions in Taiwan using the SF-36

Miaw-Chwen Lee, Andrew Michael Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper measures and decomposes socio-economic inequality in general and mental health of Taiwan residents using concentration indices. The data from the 2001 Taiwanese National Health Interview Survey is based on multi-stage systematic sampling: 18,142 Subjects aged 12 and above provided answers to questions on general and mental health domains of SF-36 Taiwan version. Significant inequalities favouring higher income groups emerge in both general and mental health, but these are particularly high for residents in remote areas. The decomposition analysis shows that in both areas income itself accounts for a significant and sizeable contribution (40-73%) of general and mental health inequality. The second largest contribution comes from inequality in education (15-22%) for general health and from employment status (17-18%) for mental health. Apart front these factors. age. and lifestyles are also important contributors for both general and mental health. We also find important regional disparities in income-related inequalities. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)186-195
Number of pages10
JournalHealth Policy
Issue number2-3
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007


  • health inequality
  • concentration index
  • decomposition analysis
  • Taiwan
  • CARE

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