Learning to Address Health Inequality in the United States with a Bayesian Decision Network
Life-expectancy is a complex outcome driven by genetic, socio-demographic, environmental and geographic factors. Increasing socio-economic and health disparities in the United States are propagating the longevity-gap, making it a cause for concern. Earlier studies have probed individual factors but an integrated picture to reveal quantifiable actions has been missing. There is a growing concern about a further widening of healthcare inequality caused by Artificial Intelligence (AI) due to differential access to AI-driven services. Hence, it is imperative to explore and exploit the potential of AI for illuminating biases and enabling transparent policy decisions for positive social and health impact. In this work, we reveal actionable interventions for decreasing the longevitygap in the United States by analyzing a County-level data resource containing healthcare, socio-economic, behavioral, education and demographic features. We learn an ensembleaveraged structure, draw inferences using the joint probability distribution and extend it to a Bayesian Decision Network for identifying policy actions. We draw quantitative estimates for the impact of diversity, preventive-care quality and stablefamilies within the unified framework of our decision network. Finally, we make this analysis and dashboard available as an interactive web-application for enabling users and policy-makers to validate our reported findings and to explore the impact of ones beyond reported in this work.