McMinn, MA., Seaman, R., Dundas, R., Pell, JP., Leyland, AH. (2020) Population, Place and Space, John Wiley & Sons Ltd, 22 September 2020. [SLS]
Socio‐economic inequalities in amenable mortality rates are increasing across Europe, which is an affront to universal healthcare systems where the numbers of, and inequalities in, amenable deaths should be minimal and declining over time. However, the fundamental causes theory proposes that inequalities in health will be largest across preventable causes, where unequally distributed resources can be used to gain an advantage. Information on individual‐level inequalities that may better reflect the fundamental causes remains limited. We used the Scottish Longitudinal Study, with follow‐up to 2010 to examine trends in amenable mortality by a range of socio‐economic position measures. Large inequalities were found for all measures of socio‐economic position and were lowest for educational attainment, higher for social class and highest for social connection. To reduce inequalities, amenable mortality needs to be interpreted both as an indicator of healthcare quality and as a reflection of the unequal distribution of socio‐economic resources.