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Socioeconomic disparities in health, nutrition, and population in Bangladesh: Do education and exposure to media reduce it?
Authors: Rahman, M.S.
Source: Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, Vol 6, Num 3, Page: 286-293
Topic(s): Education
Health equity
Service utilization
Country: Asia
  Bangladesh
Published:
Abstract: The focus of the paper is to examine socioeconomic disparities in health, nutrition, and population in Bangladesh and to investigate whether education and media exposure would reduce the disparities. Data on health status and health services utilization, extracted from the 2004 Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey, have been analyzed and presented graphically to highlight the inequalities that exist among different socioeconomic groups. Poor-rich (PR) ratio and concentration index (CI) have been calculated to observe the extent of inequalities. In an attempt to understand whether education of women and exposure to media modifies the poor-rich disparities, CI and PR ratio have also been calculated for each category of education and media exposure. Again, relative ratios (RR) and ‘difference in CIs’ have been calculated for each indicator to assess the degree of reduction of disparities due to education and media exposure. The observed RRs and ‘differences in CIs’ for almost all indicators suggest that lower inequality exists among those who are exposed to media compared to those without exposed to media. Similar findings were observed with those having no-education and having secondary or more. That is, higher education and exposure to mass media can reduce the poor-rich disparities substantially.