Main Organiser

Julius Centre University of Malaya

Co-organiser

Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malay

Supported by

University of Malaya

DERIVATION OF NOVEL INDICES OF SOCIO-ECONOMIC STATUS FOR HEALTH RESEARCH

Author

Arul Earnest

Institution

Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School

Abstract

Objectives: Socio-economic measures have been proven to be associated with mortality and morbidity of a number of diseases worldwide. The aim of this study was to create indexes of socio- economic disadvantage (SEDI) and socio-economic advantage (SAI) for use in Singapore.

Methods: We obtained socio-economic data from the 2010 Singapore census including housing type, highest educational level, literacy level, occupational categories, industries employed in, personal and household income. We used Principal Component Analysis (PCA) to create SEDI and SAI using a structured and iterative process to identify and include influential variables in the final index.

Results: We narrowed the census data to a final list of 13 variables, including living in 3 room public housing, household income less than S$4000, personal income less than S$2500 and primary or lower level of education. The 3 areas with highest SEDI scores were Outram (120.1), followed by Rochor (111.0) and Downtown Core (110.4). The areas with highest SAI scores were Tanglin (126.7), River Valley (123.7) and Newton (123.5).

Conclusion: We have created a socio-economic disadvantage index and socio-economic advantage index, which can be used along with associated health data to better understand the association between socio-economic status and health.