Increasing educational attainment and mortality reduction: A systematic review and taxonomy

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Byhoff, E
Hamati, MC
Power, R
Burgard, SA
Chopra, V
Griffith University Author(s)
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2017
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https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Abstract

Background: Understanding the relationship between increasing educational attainment and mortality reduction has important policy and public health implications. This systematic review of the literature establishes a taxonomy to facilitate evaluation of the association between educational attainment and early mortality. Methods: Following PRISMA guidelines, we searched Ovid Medline, Embase, PubMed and hand searches of references for English-language primary data analyses using education as an independent variable and mortality as a dependent variable. Initial searches were undertaken in February 2015 and updated in April 2016. Results: One thousand, seven hundred and eleven unique articles were identified, 418 manuscripts were screened and 262 eligible studies were included in the review. After an iterative review process, the literature was divided into four study domains: (1) all-cause mortality (n = 68, 26.0%), (2) outcome-specific mortality (n = 89, 34.0%), (3) explanatory pathways (n = 51, 19.5%), and (4) trends over time (n = 54, 20.6%). These four domains comprise a novel taxonomy that can be implemented to better quantify the relationship between education and mortality. Conclusions: We propose an organizational taxonomy for the education-mortality literature based upon study characteristics that will allow for a more in-depth understanding of this association. Our review suggests that studies that include mediators or subgroups can explain part, but not all, of the relationship between education and early mortality. Trial registration: PROSPERO registration # CRD42015017182.

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BMC Public Health
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17
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1
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© The Author(s). 2017 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
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Health services and systems
Public health
Education
Mortality
Systematic review
Taxonomy
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Byhoff, E; Hamati, MC; Power, R; Burgard, SA; Chopra, V, Increasing educational attainment and mortality reduction: A systematic review and taxonomy, BMC Public Health, 2017, 17 (1), pp. 719:1-719:1
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