Educational inequalities in cancer mortality differ greatly between countries around the Baltic Sea
Objective: To compare educational inequalities in cancer mortality between Poland, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland and Sweden. Methods: Data are either follow-up or unlinked cross-sectional studies. The relative index of inequality (RII) and the slope index of inequality (SII) are calculated to express the magnitude of mortality differences according to educational level for all cancers and for specific cancers. Results: Large educational inequalities in total cancer mortality were observed, particularly amongst men. Inequalities in upper aero-digestive tract and lung cancer in men and cervix cancer in women were larger in Poland, Lithuania and Estonia, whereas inequalities in lung cancer in women were larger in Finland and Sweden. Conclusions: Countries of the Baltic Sea region differ strongly with regard to the magnitude and pattern of the educational inequalities in cancer mortality.