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Housing Deprivation and Health: A Longitudinal Analysis

Housing Studies

Author: Marsh, A. , Gordon, D. , Heslop, P. , Pantazis, C.
Type: Journal Article
Year: 2000


While there is a longitudinal literature that considers the impact of poor socio-economic circumstances upon health, the more specific impact of poor housing upon health is much less frequently studied longitudinally. This paper draws on the National Child Development Study to examine the impact upon health of poor housing through the life course. The analysis takes the novel approach of constructing a composite severity of ill health measure to act as the dependent variable. Poor housing is operationalised through a housing deprivation index calculated for each sweep of the NCDS. The index of multiple housing deprivation goes beyond traditional concerns with the quality and amenity of a dwelling to incorporate key subjective factors such as satisfaction with dwelling or residential area: these subjective factors play a particularly important role in the index. The key result is that, even when other relevant factors are allowed for, the NCDS data suggest that experience of both current and past poor housing is significantly associated with greater likelihood of ill health. Moreover, for those who are living in non-deprived housing conditions in adulthood, ill health is more likely among those who experienced housing deprivation in earlier life than among those who did not. Thus, history matters. The analysis also highlights the increasing inadequacy of conventional measures of housing deprivation.

Further Details

Full Title: Housing Studies
Pages: 411-428
Volume: 15
Issue: 3
Accession Number: December, 2010
Research Notes: Electronic copy added 24/07/2013
Keywords: HousinghealthchildUnited KingdomHousing deprivation indexill healthSubjective factors
Reads: 121