In Greece, the last decade, the harsh austerity measures, that were enacted, had a huge impact on patients’ suffering from chronic diseases. The aim of the current study was to assess the financial ability of the patients suffering from an acute or
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In Greece, the last decade, the harsh austerity measures, that were enacted, had a huge impact on patients’ suffering from chronic diseases. The aim of the current study was to assess the financial ability of the patients suffering from an acute or chronic respiratory disease hospitalized in an urban pulmonary university clinic in central Greece and to explore the correlation of their health status with their financial ability. Material and methods:
An anonymous and self completed questionnaire was administered in the Greek language. It included the SF-36 and the EQ-5D-3L scale that are validated in the Greek language and a new scale (Financial Ability Scale, FAS) that has been developed and validated. Results:
Half of the patients (55%) suffered from a chronic respiratory disease (64% COPD and 36% asthma) while 45% from an acute respiratory disease (pneumonia). Those suffering from COPD were mainly males (88.7%), over 65 years old (74.6%), with primary education or some primary (83.1%), covered by public health insurance (95.8%) and living with their families (91.5%). With the exception of anxiety/depression, the more the problems with mobility, self-care, usual activities and pain/discomfort, the worse the financial ability of the participants. Those >65 years old, with fewer years of education, suffering from a chronic disease and those having a better experience from the current hospitalization, had a statistically significant lower VAS. Those aged >65 years old reported a lower financial ability (26.00 ± 9.41 vs. 29.24 ± 10.63) as well as those with a chronic respiratory disease (24.18 ± 7.90 vs. 30.57 ± 11.98). The years lived with the disease correlated statistically and negatively (r = −0.232; p
= 0.001) with the total financial ability score. Conclusions:
Economic crisis in Greece, affected COPD burden in terms of financial ability, and quality of life.