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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

Florida International: Researcher Finds Socioeconomic Status and Self-rated Health Linked in China

Socioeconomic status is often associated with differences in people’s reported self-rated health status. Many studies have been conducted on self-related health status in developed countries, but few studies have reported on self-related health in developing countries.

Prof. Wenjie Sun from Florida International University Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work recently worked on a collaboration with Tulane University, Shenandoah University, Wannan Medical College, and Soochow University to better understand how self-rated health affects perceived socioeconomic status in China. Their findings were recently published in the journal Medicine.

“Having the largest world population, the Chinese government’s primary goal is to eliminate disparities among its citizens. However, after the “Open Policy” in late 1970s that lead to economic development, socioeconomic status of individuals developed differentiation. This became a risk factor with huge impacts on health status,” Dr. Sun said. “China provides us a golden opportunity to observe the social-economic effect on health disparities as a natural experiment because China used to be a very equal in its economy with a flat social structural in societal status, which continues to change as the country does.”

The study included a total of 17,677 Chinese adults from six provinces with a mean age of 33.1.

The study found that overall, 34.4 percent of study participants reported “good” on their general self-rated health (male: 35.8 percent; female: 32.9 percent). Additionally, the study found that 26.2 percent reported “good” on the time-comparative (this year vs last year) self-rated health (male: 27.2 percent; female: 25.3 percent).

Read the full report.