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J Public Health Policy. 2014 May;35(2):171-84. doi: 10.1057/jphp.2014.8. Epub 2014 Mar 13.

Commentary: approaches, strengths, and limitations of avoidable mortality.

Author information

1
1] Agència de Salut Pública de Barcelona, Plaça Lesseps, 1, Barcelona 08023, Spain [2] Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain [3] CIBER Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Spain [4] Institute of Biomedical Research (IIB Sant Pau), Barcelona, Spain.
2
1] Agència de Salut Pública de Barcelona, Plaça Lesseps, 1, Barcelona 08023, Spain [2] CIBER Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Spain [3] Institute of Biomedical Research (IIB Sant Pau), Barcelona, Spain.
3
1] CIBER Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Spain [2] Universitat de Vic, Vic, Spain.

Abstract

Publication of recent papers such as the one by Schoenbaum and colleagues entitled 'Mortality Amenable to Health Care in the United States: The Roles of Demographics and Health Systems Performance' has stimulated this commentary. We discuss strengths and limitations of amenable and avoidable mortality in health-care systems' performance and their contribution to health inequalities. To illustrate, we present a case study of avoidable and amenable mortality in Spain over 27 years. We conclude that amenable mortality is not a good indicator of health-care systems' performance, or for determining whether it could give rise to health inequalities. To understand health problems and to assess the impact of interventions affecting health requires good, basic, and routine monitoring of health indicators and of socioeconomic determinants of health.

PMID:
24621843
DOI:
10.1057/jphp.2014.8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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