Estimating the US Baseline Distribution of Health Inequalities Across Race, Ethnicity, and Geography for Equity-Informative Cost-Effectiveness Analysis [Editor's Choice]

Oct 1, 2023, 00:00 AM
Section Order : 1485
First Page : 1485


Information on how life expectancy, disability-free life expectancy, and quality-adjusted life expectancy varies across equity-relevant subgroups is required to conduct distributional cost-effectiveness analysis. These summary measures are not comprehensively available in the United States, given limitations in nationally representative data across racial and ethnic groups.


Through linkage of US national survey data sets and use of Bayesian models to address missing and suppressed mortality data, we estimate health outcomes across 5 racial and ethnic subgroups (non-Hispanic American Indian or Alaska Native, non-Hispanic Asian and Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic black, non-Hispanic white, and Hispanic). Mortality, disability, and social determinant of health data were combined to estimate sex- and age-based outcomes for equity-relevant subgroups based on race and ethnicity, as well as county-level social vulnerability.


Life expectancy, disability-free life expectancy, and quality-adjusted life expectancy at birth declined from 79.5, 69.4, and 64.3 years, respectively, among the 20% least socially vulnerable (best-off) counties to 76.8, 63.6, and 61.1 years, respectively, among the 20% most socially vulnerable (worst-off) counties. Considering differences across racial and ethnic subgroups, as well as geography, gaps between the best-off (Asian and Pacific Islander; 20% least socially vulnerable counties) and worst-off (American Indian/Alaska Native; 20% most socially vulnerable counties) subgroups were large (17.6 life-years, 20.9 disability-free life-years, and 18.0 quality-adjusted life-years) and increased with age.


Existing disparities in health across geographies and racial and ethnic subgroups may lead to distributional differences in the impact of health interventions. Data from this study support routine estimation of equity effects in healthcare decision making, including distributional cost-effectiveness analysis.
HEOR Topics :
  • Epidemiology & Public Health
  • Health Disparities & Equity
  • Health Policy & Regulatory
  • Prevalence, Incidence & Disease Risk Factors
  • Study Approaches
  • Surveys & Expert Panels
Tags :
  • distributional cost-effectiveness analysis
  • equity
  • health inequalities
  • social determinants of health
  • social vulnerability index
Regions :
  • North America