Impact of economic crisis and other demographic and socio-economic factors on self-rated health in Greece

Department of Health Economics, National School of Public Health, Athens, Greece.
The European Journal of Public Health (Impact Factor: 2.59). 10/2012; 23(2). DOI: 10.1093/eurpub/cks143
Source: PubMed


Financial crisis and worsened socio-economic conditions are associated with greater morbidity, less utilization of health services and deteriorated population's health status. The aim of the present study was to investigate the determinants of self-rated health in Greece.

Two national cross-sectional surveys conducted in 2006 and 2011 were combined, and their data were pooled giving information for 10 572 individuals. The sample in both studies was random and stratified by gender, age, degree of urbanization and geographic region. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine the impact of several factors on self-rated health.

Poor self-rated health was most common in older people, unemployed, pensioners, housewives and those suffering from chronic disease. Men, individuals with higher education and those with higher income have higher probability to report better self-rated health. Furthermore, the probability of reporting poor self-rated health is higher at times of economic crisis.

Our findings confirm the association of self-rated health with economic crisis and certain demographic and socio-economic factors. Given that the economic recession in Greece deepens, immediate and effective actions targeting health inequalities and improvements in health status are deemed necessary.

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    • "Macroeconomic environmental stress poses significant costs to individuals through reduced employment opportunities, decline in incomes and levels of life-satisfaction (Frank et al., 2013; WHO, 2011). Available evidence shows that people report more health and well-being problems during recession periods (Katikireddi et al., 2012; Zavras et al., 2013). The specific economic crisis that began in 2008 deteriorated labour markets and raised job loss rates. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: This study explores the associations between parental employment status and the future and educational expectations and life satisfaction of a national representative sample of adolescents. Methods and analysis: Data were obtained from 5050 adolescents, attending school and with a mean age of 13.98 years old (SD=1.85). After a descriptive analysis of the sample, Chi-square tests were used by parental employment status (both parents employed or non-employed) for adolescents future expectations variables: setting up goals and plans for the future; think about completing high school /professional education; aspire to go on to university/ further education upon leaving high school. Moreover, ANOVA was used with life-satisfaction. Results: Employment of both parents is positively associated with higher future planning and higher educational expectations compared to parental non-employment. In addition, adolescents reporting higher future and educational expectations show greater life-satisfaction scores. Conclusions: This study provides evidence on how adolescents’ future and educational expectations differs by parental employment status and, in turn, life-satisfaction. The evidence is relevant given the actual socioeconomic context and can be useful to acknowledge the need to support research on adolescents’ with non-employed parents
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    • "In Greece, economic crisis and the implementation of austerity measures have worsened the self-rated health status as well as several health indicators [3,4]. The austerity measures have been associated with hospital mergers and reduction of hospital staff, having a negative impact on accessibility and availability. "
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives To investigate the magnitude of barriers in access to health services for chronic patients and the socioeconomic and demographic characteristics that affect them. Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted in 1,594 chronic patients suffering from diabetes, hypertension, COPD and Alzheimer. Logistic regression analyses were carried out in order to explore the factors related to economic and geographical barriers in access, as well as the determinants of barriers due to waiting lists. Results A total of 25% of chronic patients face geographical barriers while 63.5% and 58.5% of them are in front of economic and waiting list barriers, respectively. Unemployed, low-income and low-educated are more likely to face economic barriers in access. Moreover, women, low-income patients, and patients with lower health status are more likely to be in front of geographical barriers. In addition, the probability of waiting lists occurrence is greater for unemployed, employees and low income patients. Conclusions Barriers in access can be mainly attributed to income decrease and unemployment. In this context, health policy measures are essential for removing barriers in access. Otherwise, inequalities may increase and chronic patients’ health status will be deteriorated. These consequences imply adverse effects on health expenditure.
    International Journal for Equity in Health 07/2014; 13(1):54. DOI:10.1186/1475-9276-13-54 · 1.71 Impact Factor
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    • "A great deal of dialogue and social science discourse has focused on the world financial crisis and the ensuing austerity policies that have been playing havoc on peoples' lives, livelihoods, and overall health (Kentikelenis, Karanikolos, Reeves, McKee, & Stuckler, 2014; Stuckler & Basu, 2013). The people in Greece have been burdened with a multitude of crises that have taken hold in the country and their health (Kondilis et al., 2013; Zavras, Tsiantou, Pavi, Mylona, & Kyriopoulos, 2012) and mental health (Anagnostopoulos & Soumaki, 2013; Economou, Madianos, Peppou, Patelakis, & Stefanis, 2012; Stavrianakos et al., 2013) have been affected. The socioeconomic crises have had unprecedented effects on people's everyday lives and the concept of crisis has been applied to describe people's lived social, work, family, and self experiences. "
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    ABSTRACT: The focus of this study is on psychologists' accounts of how their psychotherapy work has been impacted by the socioeconomic crises that have had unprecedented effects in health care services and people's lives in Greece. Thirteen semi-structured interviews were conducted with psychologists in Community Mental Health Centers in Athens and Crete aiming to obtain nuanced and in-depth reflections on psychotherapeutic practice in the midst of socioeconomic hardships. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) was used to analyze the experiential accounts of the participants, derive themes in each transcript, connect the themes, and cluster the themes across the interview protocols. Three overriding and interconnected themes were derived: 1) Austerity: "Poverty, tragic circumstances and deficiency, are creeping into the therapy sessions"; 2) Empathizing or identifying with versus solidarity; and, 3) psychotherapy and precarity. Discussion focuses on the antithetical aspects of the psychologists' reflections and the social versus the intrapsychic interpretations that they apply in discussing their psychotherapeutic work.
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