Being In The Richest 1 Percent Buys An American 10 More Years Of Life
As if the income disparity in the United States wasn’t already dispiriting enough, a new study has found that the health gap between the richest and poorest Americans is widening, allowing the rich to live their rich lives for longer.
“Low-income Americans are increasingly left behind,” wrote Jacob Bor, a co-author of the study.
The study from the University Boston School of Health, published in the Lancet, found that the richest one percent of this country lives an average of 10 to 15 years longer than the poorest one percent. Those with a middle or high income enjoy a more modest boost of two years of life expectancy on average.
Poverty is commonly linked to worse health because people with less money can’t afford as much health care and tend to have less healthy diets, as pointed out by Time. The income gap is only increasing, bringing with it a widening disparity in health. It’s a vicious cycle, and the study’s authors say one reason it’s getting worse is because the poor are less likely to receive Medicare because they’re less likely to reach the aid necessary to receive the federal benefits.
The study warns that this effect will only get worse if the income gap continues to increase. In just one generation, the life expectancy could be 10 years longer for the richest 20 percent of Americans than it is for the poorest 20 percent.
If that isn’t sinister, what is?