Tampubolon, Gindo (2010): Recall error and recall bias in life course epidemiology.
Download (227kB) | Preview
OBJECTIVES I propose a distinction between recall error and recall bias and examine the the effect of childhood financial hardship on adult health, subject to such recall problems. Studying the effect of childhood hardship on adult health is a prototypical investigation in life course studies where both non-clinical factors and long-duration processes are at play in determining health outcome. These factors and processes are often elicited retrospectively. Unfortunately, retrospective information on childhood hardship is often subject to recall error and recall bias. There is surprisingly little methodological work on how to purge their effects in retrospective life course studies. METHODS I recast a variant of generalised latent variable models as covariate error measurement model to purge recall error in life course study. Additionally, I recast the endogeneous treatment model as a solution to the problem of recall bias. I apply both models to examine the effect of childhood financial hardship on adult health status of more than 359,000 European respondents from 23 countries. In addition, I validate the solutions using the National Child Development Study cohort where both prospective and restrospective information are available. RESULTS Childhood financial hardship has a strong effect on adult health status. Once recall error is accounted for in a generalised latent variable model, the effect reduced by an order of magnitude though remain statistically significant. Applying the endogeneous treatment model of recall bias suggests that childhood hardship is systematically misreported by respondents. Once this bias is purged, the effect of childhood deprivation on adult health increased markedly. Such an increase is consistent with multiple direct and indirect pathways linking childhood hardship and adult health. CONCLUSION Problems of recall error and recall bias are common in life course retrospective studies. Applied to data from 23 European countries, the proposed solutions recover the effect of childhood hardship on adult health outcome.
|Item Type:||MPRA Paper|
|Original Title:||Recall error and recall bias in life course epidemiology|
|Keywords:||recall bias; generalised latent variable model; life course; childhood hardship; European Survey of Income and Living Conditions; EUSILC; NCDS|
|Subjects:||I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I1 - Health > I18 - Government Policy ; Regulation ; Public Health|
|Depositing User:||Gindo Tampubolon|
|Date Deposited:||13. Jul 2010 09:02|
|Last Modified:||17. Mar 2014 09:49|
Berney, L. R., Blane, D. B., 1997. Collecting retrospective data: Accuracy of recall after 50 years judged against historical records. Social Science & Medicine 45 (10), 1519-1525.
Case, A., Fertig, A., Paxson, C., 2005. The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance. Journal of Health Economics 24 (2), 365-389.
Conger, R. D., Conger, K. J., Elder, Jr., G. H., 1997. Family economic hardship and adolescent adjustment: Mediating and moderating processes. In: Duncan and Brooks-Gunn (1997), pp. 288-310.
Davey Smith, G., Lynch, J., 2004. Life course approaches to socioeconomic differentials in health. In: Kuh and Ben-Shlomo (2004), pp. 77 115.
Duncan, G. J., Brooks-Gunn, J. (Eds.), 1997. Consequences of Growing Up Poor. Russell Sage Foundation, New York.
Feinstein, L., Sabates, R., Anderson, T. M., Sorhaindo, A., Hammond, C.,2006. What are the effects of education on health? In: Measuring the Effects of Education on Health and Civic Engagement. OECD, Paris, pp.171-354.
Glewwe, P., Jacoby, H. G., King, E. M., 2001. Early childhood nutrition and academic achievement: a longitudinal analysis. Journal of Public economics 81 (3), 345-368.
Holland, P., Berney, L., Blane, D., Davey Smith, G., Gunnell, D. J., Montgomery, S. M., 2000. Life course accumulation of disadvantage: childhood health and hazard exposure during adulthood. Social Science & Medicine 50 (9), 1285-1295.
Kuh, D., Ben-Shlomo, Y. (Eds.), 2004. A Life Course Approach to Chronic Disease Epidemiology, 2nd Edition. Life Course Approach to Adult Health. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Kuh, D., Power, C., Blane, D., Bartley, M., 2004. Socioeconomic pathways between childhood and adult health. In: Kuh and Ben-Shlomo (2004), pp. 371-395.
Marmot, M., Wilkinson, R. G. (Eds.), 2006. Social Determinants of Health, 2nd Edition. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
McLanahan, S. S., 1997. Parent absence or poverty: Which matters more? In: Duncan and Brooks-Gunn (1997), pp. 35-48.
Rabe-Hesketh, S., Yang, S., Pickles, A., 2001. Multilevel models for censored and latent responses. Statistical Methods in Medical Research 10 (6), 409-427.
Ryff, C. D., Singer, B. H. (Eds.), 2001. Emotion, Social Relationshps, and Health. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Ryff, C. D., Singer, B. H., Wing, E., Love, G. D., 2001. Elective affinities and uninvited agonies: Mapping emotion with significant others onto health. In: Ryff and Singer (2001), pp. 133-175.
Schoon, I., 2006. Risk and Resilience: Adaptations in Changing Times. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Skrondal, A., Rabe-hesketh, S., 2004. Generalized Latent Variable Modeling: Multilevel, Longitudinal, and Structural Equation Models. Chapman Hall/CRC, London.
Szanton, S. L., Thorpe, R. J., Whitfield, K., 2010. Life-course financial strain and health in African-Americans. Social Science & Medicine 71 (2), 259-265.