Education, aging, and health: to what extent can the rise in educational level relieve the future health (care) burden associated with population aging in the Netherlands?

J Clin Epidemiol. 2000 Sep;53(9):955-63. doi: 10.1016/s0895-4356(99)00232-2.


This article describes to what extent the expected rise in the educational level of the Dutch population can counterbalance the increases in the prevalence of ill-health and health care utilization based on the aging of the population for the period 1996-2020. Logistic regression models are used to estimate current differences in health (care utilization) by age, sex, and educational level, using data from the Netherlands Health Interview Survey. The current differences in health (care utilization) are applied to national projections of the composition of the population by age, sex, and educational level. Also, scenarios have been made in which the health differences by educational level are assumed to converge and diverge. The rise in the educational level counteracts the expected increases in ill-health based on population aging to a substantial degree (10-100%). We therefore recommend that in projections of ill-health also changes in educational level are taken into account.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cost of Illness*
  • Educational Status*
  • Female
  • Health Services Needs and Demand*
  • Health Services for the Aged / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Netherlands