Patrick Deboosere

Patrick Deboosere
Vrije Universiteit Brussel | VUB · Sociology (SOCI)

PhD

About

177
Publications
28,717
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5,347
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 1991 - present
Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (177)
Article
Full-text available
Background COVID-19 mortality, excess mortality, deaths per million population (DPM), infection fatality ratio (IFR) and case fatality ratio (CFR) are reported and compared for many countries globally. These measures may appear objective, however, they should be interpreted with caution. Aim We examined reported COVID-19-related mortality in Belgi...
Article
Background Temperature may trigger the risk of suicide, however, the extent and shape of the associations show geographical variation. Here, we investigate the short-term effects of temperature on suicide deaths occurring in Brussels between January 1st, 2002 and December 31st, 2011. Methods We conducted a bidirectional time-stratified case-crosso...
Article
Background Ambient air pollution exposure has been associated with higher mortality risk in numerous studies. We assessed potential variability in the magnitude of this association for non-accidental, cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, and lung cancer mortality in a country-wide administrative cohort by exposure assessment method and by a...
Article
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Objective: To analyse the trends in chronic liver diseases and cirrhosis mortality, and the associated socioeconomic inequalities, in nine European cities and urban areas before and after the onset of the 2008 financial crisis. Methods: This is an ecological study of trends in three periods of time: two before (2000-2003 and 2004-2008), and one...
Article
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Background Epidemiological studies suggest that residing close to green space reduce mortality rates. We investigated the relationship between long-term exposure to residential green space and non-accidental and cardio-respiratory mortality. Methods We linked the Belgian 2001 census to population and mortality register follow-up data (2001–2011) a...
Article
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Socioeconomic inequalities in disability-free life expectancy (DFLE) exist across all European countries, yet the driving determinants of these differences are not completely known. We calculated the impact on educational inequalities in DFLE of equalizing the distribution of eight risk factors for mortality and disability using register-based mort...
Article
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Background Persons with a lower socioeconomic position spend more years with disability, despite their shorter life expectancy, but it is unknown what the important determinants are. This study aimed to quantify the contribution to educational inequalities in years with disability of eight risk factors: father’s manual occupation, low income, few s...
Article
Background Living in green areas has been associated with several health benefits; however, the available evidence on such benefits for hypertension is still limited. This study aimed to investigate and compare the association between residential exposure to greenspace and hypertension in Barcelona, Spain and Brussels, Belgium. Methods This cross-...
Article
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Objective: To analyse socioeconomic inequalities in all-cause mortality among men and women in nine European urban areas during the recent economic crisis, and to compare the results to those from two periods before the crisis. Method: This is an ecological study of trends based on three time periods (2000-2003, 2004-2008 and 2009-2014). The uni...
Article
Green space may improve cardiovascular (CV) health, for example by promoting physical activity and by reducing air pollution, noise and heat. Socioeconomic and environmental factors may modify the health effects of green space. We examined the association between residential green space and reimbursed CV medication sales in Belgium between 2006 and...
Article
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Background Reducing socio-economic health inequalities is a public health priority, necessitating careful monitoring that should take into account changes in the population composition. We analyzed the evolution of educational inequalities in life expectancy and disability-free life expectancy at age 25 (LE25 and DFLE25) in Belgium between 2001 and...
Article
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Socioeconomic inequalities in mortality are a challenge for public health around the world, but appear to be resistant to policy-making. We aimed to identify European countries which have been more successful than others in narrowing inequalities in mortality, and the factors associated with narrowing inequalities. We collected and harmonised morta...
Article
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Background: Socioeconomic inequalities in longevity have been found in all European countries. We aimed to assess which determinants make the largest contribution to these inequalities. Methods: We did an international comparative study of inequalities in risk factors for shorter life expectancy in Europe. We collected register-based mortality d...
Article
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Background: Few studies have assessed the impact of the financial crisis on inequalities in suicide mortality in European urban areas. The objective of the study was to analyse the trend in area socioeconomic inequalities in suicide mortality in nine European urban areas before and after the beginning of the financial crisis. Methods: This ecolo...
Article
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Background The slope (SII) and relative (RII) indices of inequality are commonly recommended to monitor health inequality policies. As an upwards shift of the educational level distribution (ELD) can be part of those policies, we examine how such a shift affects the SII, the RII and the population attributable fraction (PAF). Methods We simulated...
Article
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The different geographical contexts seen in European metropolitan areas are reflected in the uneven distribution of health risk factors for the population. Accumulating evidence on multiple health determinants point to the importance of individual, social, economic, physical and built environment features, which can be shaped by the local authoriti...
Article
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Background Belgium lacks a systematic overview of health differences by occupation. This is the first study to examine self-reported health among 27 occupational groups in Belgium with a lag time of 10 years. Methods Individual data are derived from an anonymous linkage between the 1991 and 2001 Belgian census. The total working population (25–55...
Article
Urban areas in Europe are facing a range of environmental public health challenges, such as air pollution, traffic noise and road injuries. The identification and quantification of the public health risks associated with exposure to environmental conditions is important for prioritising policies and interventions that aim to diminish the risks and...
Article
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At the beginning of the twentieth century, life expectancy at birth was much lower in Flanders, the northern part of Belgium, than in Wallonia, the southern part of the country. In the literature, this excess mortality is mainly attributed to high levels of infant mortality caused by bad feeding practices and low-quality drinking water. The regiona...
Article
Background: We aimed to investigate the contribution of chronic conditions to gender differences in disability-free life expectancy (DFLE) and life expectancy with disability (LED) in Belgium in 2001, 2004 and 2008. Methods: Data on disability and chronic conditions from participants of the 2001, 2004 and 2008 Health Interview Surveys in Belgium...
Article
Background: Smoking is the leading cause of premature mortality and morbidity. This study aimed at assessing the impact of smoking on life expectancy (LE) and LE with (LED) and without disability (DFLE). We further estimated the contribution of disability and mortality and their causes to differences in LED and DFLE by smoking. Methods: Data on...
Article
Unfavorable health trends among the lowly educated have recently been reported from the United States. We analyzed health trends by education in European countries, paying particular attention to the possibility of recent trend interruptions, including interruptions related to the impact of the 2008 financial crisis. We collected and harmonized dat...
Conference Paper
Background/aim Prior research on the association between green spaces and all-cause mortality has generally shown a reduction in mortality rates. So far, the specific effects of green spaces on mortality have not been explored in Belgium. Our study investigates the association between long-term residential exposure to green spaces and all-cause mor...
Article
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Purpose: Cleaning work has been associated with a wide range of occupational health hazards. However, little is known about mortality risks in the cleaning industry. This study examines differences in cause-specific mortality between cleaners, manual and non-manual workers. Methods: Using exhaustive census-linked mortality data, the total Belgia...
Article
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Background In Belgium, socio-economic inequalities in mortality have long been described at country-level. As Belgium is a federal state with many responsibilities in health policies being transferred to the regional levels, regional breakdown of health indicators is becoming increasingly relevant for policy-makers, as a tool for planning and evalu...
Article
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Background The global phenomenon of population ageing is creating new challenges in both high and middle income countries, as functional limitations are expected to increase with age. The attribution method has been proposed to identify which conditions contribute most to disability using cross-sectional data. Although the original method was based...
Article
We investigate the budgetary and distributional efffects of a demographic and economic evolution in Flanders between 2011 and 2031. We project demographic changes by means of two multi-state population projections (LiPro-projections), on the basis of which we statically reweigh the EU-SILC 2008 dataset. In addition, we assume a modest real exogenou...
Book
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Despite the significant advances that have been made at the European Union (EU) level in terms of health inequality measurement, there is still a lack of comparable health-related data across countries and regions 1. Existing measures and indicators of health status and quality of life are considered inadequate2 to capture the holistic understandin...
Article
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In addition to underlying health disorders and socio-economic or community factors, air pollution may trigger suicide mortality. This study evaluates the association between short-term variation in air pollution and 10 years of suicide mortality in Belgium. In a bidirectional time-stratified case-crossover design, 20,533 suicide deaths registered b...
Article
Despite its high potential to support decision-making, the role of policy assessment in real-world policy making in the field of poverty and social inequalities remains largely questioned. In this study, we analyse policy assessment's role in a context of real-world policymaking, by means of a case study on a legislative proposal on integration pol...
Article
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The magnitude of socioeconomic inequalities in mortality differs importantly between countries, but these variations have not been satisfactorily explained. We explored the role of behavioral and structural determinants of these variations, by using a dataset covering 17 European countries in the period 1970–2010, and by conducting multilevel multi...
Article
With the implementation of health impact assessment (HIA)'s conceptual model into real-world policymaking, a number of fundamental issues arise concerning its decision-support function. Rooted in a rational vision of the decision-making process, focus regarding both conceptualisation and evaluation has been mainly on the function of instrumental po...
Article
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The 'fundamental causes' theory stipulates that when new opportunities for lowering mortality arise, higher socioeconomic groups will benefit more because of their greater material and non-material resources. We tested this theory using harmonised mortality data by educational level for 22 causes of death and 20 European populations from the period...
Article
This study aims to investigate the association between educational level and breast cancer mortality in Europe in the 2000s. Unlike most other causes of death, breast cancer mortality tends to be positively related to education, with higher educated women showing higher mortality rates. Research has however shown that the association is changing fr...
Article
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This article discusses (i) the history of asbestos use between 1948 and 2001; (ii) the development of the current epidemic of mesothelioma deaths (1969-2014); and (iii) reasons for the belated government intervention in Belgium. Belgium imported over two billion tonnes of raw asbestos from 1948 until 1998. The current peak in male mesothelioma deat...
Article
Background Reducing socioeconomic inequalities in mortality, a key public health objective may be supported by a careful monitoring and assessment of the contributions of specific causes of death to the global inequality. Methods The 1991 and 2001 Belgian censuses were linked with cause-of-death data, each yielding a study population of over 5 mil...
Article
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Background Suicidal behaviour has long been recognized to vary widely between countries. Yet, rates of suicidal behaviour do not only vary between, but also within countries. Gender and socioeconomic differences in suicidal behaviour are well established, but the literature on suicidal behaviour and migrants is sparse, particularly in Belgium. The...
Article
Background Ischaemic heart disease (IHD) is one of the leading causes of death worldwide with a higher risk of dying among people with a lower socioeconomic status. We investigated the potential for reducing educational differences in IHD mortality in 21 European populations based on two counterfactual scenarios—the upward levelling scenario and th...
Article
Objective: To assess differences in mortality rates between social security statuses in two independent samples of Belgian and Spanish male workers. Methods: Study of two retrospective cohorts (Belgium, n=23,607; Spain, n=44,385) of 50-60 year old male employees with 4 years of follow-up. Mortality rate ratios (MRR) were estimated using Poisson...
Article
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SETTING: Previous studies in many countries have shown that mortality due to tuberculosis (TB) is higher among people of lower socio-economic status. OBJECTIVE: To assess the magnitude and direction of trends in educational inequalities in TB mortality in 11 European countries. DESIGN: Data on TB mortality between 1980 and 2011 were collected amo...
Article
Background: Smoking contributes to socioeconomic inequalities in mortality, but the extent to which this contribution has changed over time and driven widening or narrowing inequalities in total mortality remains unknown. We studied socioeconomic inequalities in smoking-attributable mortality and their contribution to inequalities in total mortali...
Article
Full-text available
Smoking is considered the single most important preventable cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, contributing to increased incidence and severity of disabling conditions. The aim of this study was to assess the contribution of chronic conditions to the disability burden across smoking categories in middle-aged adults in Belgium.Data from 10,...
Data
Characteristics of the individuals with complete and missing information. Health Interview Survey, Belgium, 1997, 2001, 2004, and 2008. ap-value obtained by the χ2 test. (DOCX)
Data
Prevalence of never, former, occasional light, daily light, and daily heavy smokers by survey year and gender in individuals aged 40–60 years. Health Interview Survey, Belgium, 1997, 2001, 2004, and 2008. Former (2y+): former smokers who reported smoking cessation two years or more prior to the interview; Former (<2y): former smokers who reported s...
Data
Independence assumption and multimorbidity in the attribution method. (DOCX)
Article
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Background: The increase in longevity along with a high prevalence of chronic conditions contribute to increased disability burden. Despite the high occurrence of multimorbidity observed in advanced ages, most studies are restricted to the investigation of individual diseases. In this study, we assessed the impact of chronic conditions and multimo...
Article
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Several studies have focused on the association between parental and personal socioeconomic position (SEP) and health, with mixed results depending on the specific health outcome, research methodology and population under study. In the last decades, a growing interest is given to the influence of intergenerational mobility on several health outcome...
Article
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This study addresses educational inequalities in young-adult mortality between the 1990s and the 2000s by comparing trends in the three different regions in Belgium stratified by sex. Social inequalities in mortality are of major concern to public health but are rarely studied at young ages. Substantial health differences have been found between th...
Article
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Age-associated disability reduces quality of life in older populations and leads to wide-range implications for social and health policy. The identification of diseases that contribute to the disability burden is crucial to the development of prevention and intervention strategies to reduce disability. In this study, we assessed the contribution of...
Article
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Background: Socioeconomic inequalities in alcohol-related mortality have been documented in several European countries, but it is unknown whether the magnitude of these inequalities differs between countries and whether these inequalities increase or decrease over time. Methods and findings: We collected and harmonized data on mortality from fou...
Article
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La démographie a toujours influencé la pensée politique. La décision récente d'aug-menter l'âge à la pension dans beaucoup de pays développés est inspirée par l'évo-lution importante de la composition par âge de la population. Mais il y a en réalité peu d'arguments pour augmenter l'âge à la retraite si l'on tient compte de l'ensem-ble des données d...
Article
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Living in green/blue areas is associated with better health. This may be due to low air and/or noise pollution, opportunities for physical activity, facilitation of social contacts, and promotion of recovery from fatigue and stress. Yet, socio-economic (SE) factors also explain inequalities in health and access to green/blue spaces. The GRESP-HEALT...