The Rural-Urban Gradient and Life Expectancy in the United States, 1970–1990
Life expectancy is arguably the single most important indicator of the general health of a population (Lamb and Siegel 2004) and it has long been documented that variations in life expectancy exist among the broad geographic divisions within the United States, as well as among individual states (Dublin et al. 1949; Glover 1921; James and Cossman 2006; Oosse 2003). However, until the work of Swanson and Stockwell (1986), virtually nothing was known about sub-state variations. Using regression analysis, Swanson and Stockwell (1986) examined life expectancy in 1930 and 1980 in Ohio and found that while differences narrowed between 1930 and 1980, significant geographic variations in life expectancy persisted. Subsequent work by Swanson et al. (2009) found significant variations for the U.S. as a whole.
KeywordsLife Expectancy Crude Death Rate Average Life Expectancy Rural County County Population
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