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Am Econ Rev. 2002;92(5):1308-34.

Economic Status and Health in Childhood: The Origins of the Gradient.

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Department of Economics and Woodrow Wilson School, Center for Health and Wellbeing, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ.
Department of Economics and Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, IL.


The well-known positive association between health and income in adulthood has antecedents in childhood. Not only is children’s health positively related to household income, but the relationship between household income and children's health becomes more pronounced as children age. Part of the relationship can be explained by the arrival and impact of chronic conditions. Children from lower income households with chronic conditions have worse health than do those from higher-income households. The adverse health effects of lower income accumulate over children’s lives. Part of the intergenerational transmission of socioeconomic status may work through the impact of parents' income on children’s health.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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