7: No. 4, July 2010
A Summary Measure of Health
Inequalities for a Pay-for-Population Health Performance System
This figure shows groups along the x axis and health along the y axis. The groups are low education, high education, rich, poor, male, and female. They are indicated by circles at various heights indicating that group's level of health. The group with the highest level of health, rich, has a broken horizontal line through the circle. All groups have vertical lines leading to the horizontal line to indicate their distance from the referent group, rich. Numbers are assigned to these distances and calculated as described in the legend.
Figure 3. A simplified example of the Wisconsin health
inequality measure. To obtain the overall health inequality, calculate the difference from the reference health
level (rich) for each group (poor, low education, high education, male, and female), sum them, and divide by the number of groups minus 1 (6 − 1 = 5).
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This figure shows two bar graphs, for Population A and Population B. Both bar graphs are labeled percent total population along the x axis and health along the y axis. The categories shown on the x axis are rich and poor. For Population A, a large proportion of poor people is represented by a wide bar that is short, indicated a low level of health. A small proportion of rich people is indicated by a narrow bar that is tall, indicating a high level of health. For Population Ba small proportion of poor people is represented by a narrow bar that is short, indicated a low level of health. A large proportion of rich people is indicated by a wide bar that is tall, indicating a high level of health.
Figure 5. Inequality judgment and subgroup population size. The width of the bars suggests the
proportion of poor and rich people in the 2 populations. If we consider the
degree of income-related health inequality differs in these populations, an
inequality measure should be sensitive to this difference.
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