To investigate the role of socioeconomic status (SES) in chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and offer theoretical evidence for the prevention and control of NCDs.
Cross-sectional survey and structural equation modelling.
Female participants in the 2008 National Health Services Survey in China who were 15 years and older.
SES factors were associated with the increased risk of NCDs in Chinese women. Education was identified as the most important factor with a protective role (factor loading=−0.115) for NCDs. Income mainly affected NCDs directly, whereas occupation mainly affected NCDs indirectly. The effects of SES on NCDs were more significant than that of smoking. Medical insurance, smoking and self-reported health played a mediating role in the correlations between those SES factors and NCDs.
In China, socioeconomic disparities associated with the prevalence of NCDs exist among women. Educational and social interventions are needed to mitigate their negative consequences on health outcomes in Chinese women.