Mortality Inequality in Canada and the U.S.: Divergent or Convergent Trends?

from Health Economics at on June 25, 2017 at 04:46PM

Mortality is a crucial dimension of wellbeing and inequality in a population, and mortality trends have been at the core of public debates in many Western countries. In this paper, we provide the first analysis of mortality inequality in Canada and compare its development to trends in the U.S. We find strong reductions in mortality rates across both genders and at all ages, with the exception of middle ages which only experienced moderate improvements. Inequality in mortality, measured across Canadian Census Divisions, decreased for infants and small children, while it increased slightly at higher ages. In comparison to the U.S., mortality levels in Canada improved at a similar rate despite lower initial levels. Inequality at younger ges, however, fell more strongly in the U.S., implying converging mortality gradients between the two countries.