April 11, 2016

Do Poor New Yorkers Live Longer? Study Says Yes, Despite the Income Gap

The New York Times recently took a look at the results of a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Using data compiled from anonymous earnings records and death certificates, the results offer some provocative insights into the importance of geography to how long people live–poor people in particular. There is, as we've already assumed, a longevity gap between the rich (in this study, people with household incomes of over $100,000 per year) and poor (those with incomes less than $28,000). In Manhattan, for example, the average poor person will die about six years before the average rich one. But that gap is about a year and a half smaller than the same income/longevity gap for the United States as a whole. Tulsa and Detroit, for example, were two cities with the lowest levels of life expectancy among the low-income population, with the results already adjusted for differences based on race.
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February 17, 2016

Study Finds Widening Life Expectancy Gap Between Rich and Poor Americans

A new study by the Brookings Institution finds that the inequality in life expectancy is growing more pronounced—and at a faster rate—between rich and poor Americans, Citylab reports. The study, based on government records and Social Security data, found that for men born in 1920, the average life expectancy at 50 was 79 years if he was in the top ten percent of the income spectrum; for the lowest 10 percent, that fell to 74 years (a five-year difference). Forwarding to men born in 1940, that gap widens to a 12 year difference with the top 10 percenters living until 88 on average, compared to 76 for the bottom 10. For women, the same gap grew from four to 10 years over the same time span.
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