The health effects of education: a meta-analysis

C.A. Furnee*, W.N.J. Groot, H. Maassen van den Brink

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: There is an abundance of empirical evidence, mainly from the epidemiological and social science literature, on the relation between education and health. Until now a meta-analysis of the relation between education and health was not available. This article presents a meta-analysis of studies that use self- reported health as an outcome variable to quantify the effect of education on health. Methods: Meta-analysis using a random and a fixed-effects model to quantify the marginal effect of education on self-reported health. Results: The results of the meta-analysis show that the quality adjusted life years weight (QALYweight) of a year of education is 0.036. Some tentative calculations suggest that the cost-benefit ratio of investments in education on health is highly positive. Conclusion: For public policy this implies that a more integrated approach to education and health policies should be taken.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-421
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


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