Poor people live 3-4 years less than rich people: study

People with fewer economic resources live between three and four years less than the richest, revealed a study by several groups from the Epidemiology and Public Health Area (CIBERESP) of the Network Biomedical Research Center Consortium (CIBER-ISCIII), published in the scientific journal’Scientific Reports‘.

The research teams of the ISCIII National Center for Epidemiology, the Biosanitary Research Institute of the University of Granada and the Andalusian School of Public Health have developed the first life tables in Spain for socioeconomic levelwhich will be very useful to study the survival of different diseases, including cancer.

Analyzing the relationship between the level and the Life expectancy At birth, the authors have determined that women and men residing in the poorest areas live between 3.2 and 3.8 years less, respectively, than in the richest areas.

In addition, it has been calculated that, on average, women live 5.6 years longer than men (82.9 years for women compared to 77.3 in men).

To carry out this research, all deaths from any cause of death of the 35 thousand 960 census sections of Spain during the period 2011-2013 were analyzed, and the mortality by sexage group and socioeconomic level.

The level of wealth or poverty of each zone was measured thanks to an index developed by the Spanish Society of Epidemiology, which includes information on six indicators related mainly to employment and education: percentage of manual workers (with and without employment), occasional workers, percentage of population without Secondary studies and main homes without Internet access.

“Understanding the association between life expectancy and socioeconomic status could help develop public health programs appropriate and in this line, life tables are necessary to estimate cancer-specific survival measures according to social status”, declared researcher Daniel Redondo.

Obtaining, for the first time in Spain, life tables by socioeconomic level will now allow the study of survival in cancer and other chronic diseases, introducing the perspective of health inequalities, as has already been done in other European countries such as the United Kingdom, which will contribute to a better knowledge and understanding of the factors that influence the prognosis of certain diseases in Spain.

“Our life tables are essential to calculate the Life expectancy and the estimation of survival due to cancer, since inequalities in this disease persist and have an economic impact on health costs”, argued Dr. María José Sánchez.