Demystifying Self-Rated General Health in the Chinese Population: What Does and Does Not It Measure?

Yaqiang Qi, Renmin University of China
Jianlin Niu, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences

Despite the widely use of self-report health measures in social studies of health inequality, self-rated general health (SRGH) still remains a myth and is greatly debated on whether and to what extent it measures individual's "true" health status. In addition, almost all of the available studies on this issue draw on data from developed countries, relatively little is known regarding the reliability and validity of SRGH in developing settings. In this study, we use data from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS) to address the following questions: (1) repeated reliability of SRGH; (2) predictive validity of SRGH for other health indicators; (3) possible variations across different social groups as classified by age, gender and socioeconomic status.

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 Presented in Session P7. Health and Mortality of Women, Children and Families