Skip to main content

Disability incidence and official health status transitions in Russia


Becker, Charles M. & Merkuryeva, Irina S. (2012). Disability incidence and official health status transitions in Russia. Economics and Human Biology, 10(1), 74-88.


This paper examines determinants of being disabled in Russia, along with the probability of moving from one disability status to another, using data from 1994 through 2005 from the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey. Results from multinomial probit regressions indicate that disability risk rises sharply with age, declines with income and self-reported good health, and is lower for women. Neither smoking nor drinking alcohol increases either the risk of being or becoming disabled. Recovery--health status improvement--improves with household size. Misclassification or measurement error is important: a surprisingly large proportion of "incurably" disabled Russians do in fact recover. This study has been funded in part by National Institute of Aging grant #2P30 AG17248-02 through the Population Aging Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder. We are grateful to Aleksandr Andreev for outstanding research assistance. Jeanine Braithwaite, John Komlos, Cem Mete, Mieke Meurs, Daniel Mont, Frank Sloan, and five anonymous referees contributed valuable comments. We acknowledge our appreciation without implicating them in remaining errors and misinterpretations.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Economics and Human Biology


Becker, Charles M.
Merkuryeva, Irina S.