There is ample evidence that social factors, including education, employment, income level, gender and ethnicity have a marked influence on how healthy a person is. In all countries, whether low, middle or high income, there are wide disparities in the health status of different social groups. The lower an individual’s socio-economic position is, their risk of higher poor health is possible.
Health inequalities are systematic differences in the health status of the populations of different groups. These inequalities have significant social and economic cost to both individuals and societies.
Health inequalities are different in health status or in the distribution of health resources between different populations, arising from the social conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age. Health inequalities are unfair and could be reduced by the right mix of government policies.