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Correlates of Healthy Life Expectancy in Low- and Lower-Middle-Income Countries

Category: Journal Articles


Hafiz T.A. Khan et al. (2018) Correlates of Healthy Life Expectancy in Low- and Lower-Middle-Income Countries. BMC Public Health, open access.


Healthy life expectancy (HALE) at birth is an important indicator of health status and quality of life of a country’s population. However, little is known about the determinants of HALE as yet globally or even country-specific level. Thus, we examined the factors that are associated with HALE at birth in low- and lower-middle-income countries.


In accordance with the World Bank (WB) classification seventy-nine low- and lower-middle-income countries were selected for the study. Data on HALE, demographic, socioeconomic, social structural, health, and environmental factors from several reliable sources, such as the World Health Organization, the United Nations Development Program, Population Reference Bureau, WB, Heritage Foundation, Transparency International, Freedom House, and International Center for Prison Studies were obtained as selected countries. Descriptive statistics, correlation analysis, and regression analysis were performed to reach the research objectives.


The lowest and highest HALE were observed in Sierra Leone (44.40 years) and in Sri Lanka (67.00 years), respectively. The mean years of schooling, total fertility rate (TFR), physician density, gross national income per capita, health expenditure, economic freedom, carbon dioxide emission rate, freedom of the press, corruption perceptions index, prison population rate, and achieving a level of health-related millennium development goals (MDGs) were revealed as the correlates of HALE. Among all the correlates, the mean years of schooling, TFR, freedom of the press, and achieving a level of health-related MDGs were found to be the most influential factors.


To increase the HALE in low- and lower-middle-income countries, we suggest that TFR is to be reduced as well as to increase the mean years of schooling, freedom of the press, and the achievement of a level of health-related MDGs.

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