Reporting Heterogeneity and Health Disparities across Gender and Education Levels: Evidence from Four Countries

Teresa Molina, University of Southern California

I use anchoring vignettes from surveys of the mid-aged and elderly in Indonesia, the U.S., England, and China to study the extent to which differences in self-reported health across genders and education levels can be explained by the use of different response thresholds across groups. In order to determine whether statistically significant differences between groups remain after adjusting for different thresholds, I calculate standard errors for the simulated probabilities, which have been largely ignored in previous literature. Accounting for reporting heterogeneity either reduces or eliminates the gender gap in the majority of health domains across all countries, to varying degrees. On the other hand, I find that the health disparities across education levels found in the raw data persist and are in many cases widened once I equalize thresholds across the two groups.

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Presented in Poster Session 5: Adult Health and Mortality