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Special Issue "Economic Crisis and Health"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Health Economics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2019).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Beatriz G. Lopez-Valcarcel
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
University of Las Palmas de GC, Spain
Interests: health economics; human resources for health; public health economics; new technologies in healthcare; health econometrics
Prof. Juan Oliva-Moreno
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
University of Castilla La Mancha, Spain
Interests: health economics; welfare economics; public health; economic evaluation of health care interventions

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

We are organizing a Special Issue entitled “Economic Crisis and Health” in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. The venue is a peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes articles and communications in the interdisciplinary area of environmental health sciences and public health. For detailed information on the journal, we refer you to https://www.mdpi.com/journal/ijerph.

The economic recession began in 2008. It went through different phases and asymmetrically affected many countries, with a greater or lesser degree of intensity. Beyond the macroeconomic figures, it has had tangible effects on the wellbeing of people and populations. Health, its social determinants and health care services of the general population or certain groups have been exposed to high risks.

The economic crisis has been a topic of interest for analysts from different disciplines. In PubMed there are 1,031 articles published since 2008 that have focused on "economic crisis" or "economic recession" and health. What we have learned for the 2008 crisis should help us face future challenges derived from changes in the economic cycle. Now is a good time to evaluate our knowledge on this topic from a multidisciplinary perspective, taking into account the health of human beings and the health of the planet, short-term and long-term efficiency, and equity. This monographic Issue will collect contributions that provide a global health perspective, a comparative international perspective, and specific studies for some of the countries most affected by the recent crisis.

Studies that assess the effects of the economic crisis on health, both short- and long-term, direct and indirect, should also allow one to measure the impact of interventions and policies designed to mitigate these effects, and this evaluation will be helpful for the future.

Being a topic of great social and scientific interest, the results of past empirical studies show a remarkable lack of concordance, partly due to the data used and partly due to the methods applied. Many studies have common limitations: the use of cross-sectional data and no consideration of lags between the cause (economic recession) and its effects.

It is important to consolidate rigorous methodological standards to evaluate cause–effect relationships between the economic recession, social policies, health, and the utilization of health services.

This monographic Issue will serve as a meeting point between public health and health economics and will address others issues such as the following:

  • International perspectives of the effects of economic recessions on health and healthcare;
  • Specific studies for countries particularly affected by the last economic crisis;
  • Methods for measuring the effects of economic crisis on healthcare, health, and equity, and for evaluating the impact of policies addressed to face the crisis;
  • Does really austerity kill?
  • Economic crisis, environmental problems, and global health;
  • Equity concerns related to the economic crisis;
  • Public policies, and social protection;
  • Effects of the economic crisis on specific population groups: migrants, women, children, unemployed, and seniors.

We welcome the submission of reviews, original research articles, short communications, case studies, and other kinds of articles targeting any of these core research questions and beyond. We would be delighted to attract as diverse submissions across geographies and jurisdictions as possible.

Prof. Beatriz G. Lopez-Valcarcel
Prof. Juan Oliva-Moreno
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Economic recession
  • Economic crisis
  • Austerity policies
  • Global health
  • Public expenditures
  • Equity
  • Economic policies
  • Health policies
  • Social protection
  • Migration policies

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Article
The Impact of Business Cycle on Health Financing: Subsidized, Voluntary and Out-of-Pocket Health Spending
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(6), 1928; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17061928 - 16 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 936
Abstract
Diverse types of healthcare systems in countries offer opportunities to explore the heterogeneous sources of health financing. This paper widely explores the effect of the business cycle on subsidized, voluntary and out-of-pocket health spending in 34 countries with different types of healthcare systems, [...] Read more.
Diverse types of healthcare systems in countries offer opportunities to explore the heterogeneous sources of health financing. This paper widely explores the effect of the business cycle on subsidized, voluntary and out-of-pocket health spending in 34 countries with different types of healthcare systems, by the methodology of hierarchical linear modeling (HLM). We use a panel of annual data during the years from 2000 to 2016. It further examines the business cycle-health financing mechanism by inquiring into the mediating effect of external conditions and innovative health financing, based on the structural equation modeling (SEM). The empirical results reveal that the business cycle harms subsidized spending, whereas its effect on voluntary and protective health spending is positive. Results related to the SEM indicate that the mediating effect of external conditions on the relationship between the business cycle and health financing is negative. However, we find that the business cycle plays a positive effect on health financing through innovative health financing channels. Thus, designing and implementing efforts to shift innovative health financing have substantial effects on the sustainability of healthcare systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Crisis and Health)
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Article
The Effect of the Economic Crisis on Adolescents’ Perceived Health and Risk Behaviors: A Multilevel Analysis
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(2), 643; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17020643 - 19 Jan 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1223
Abstract
Background: Previous studies have analyzed the impact of economic crises on adult’s health and lifestyles, but evidence among children and adolescents is limited. The objective of this study was to analyze the impact of the economic crisis on self-perceived health and some risk [...] Read more.
Background: Previous studies have analyzed the impact of economic crises on adult’s health and lifestyles, but evidence among children and adolescents is limited. The objective of this study was to analyze the impact of the economic crisis on self-perceived health and some risk behaviors in the Spanish adolescent population. Methods: We used data from four waves (2002, 2006, 2010, 2014) of the Health Behavior in School-Aged Children (HBSC) survey in Spain. Separate multilevel logistic and linear regression models were applied for health complaints, self-rated health, life satisfaction, smoking, alcohol consumption, and breakfast skipping. Annual change in Spanish regional unemployment rates was used as a proxy of the economic crisis. An increasing set of control variables were included, consisting of individual, socioeconomic, and family and peer relationships indicators. Median odds ratios were estimated to quantify the cross-region and cross-school variation. Results: Increases in unemployment rates were linked to a higher risk of poorer health and bad habits in the simplest models. The effect was no longer statistically significant when indicators of family and peer relationships were included, suggesting a protective effect against the impact of the economic crisis. Our findings also show that schools had a larger effect on health and lifestyles than regions. Conclusion: The child’s social context—family, peers, school, and region—play an important role on the effects of the economic crisis on health and risk behaviors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Crisis and Health)
Article
Financial Catastrophism Inherent with Out-of-Pocket Payments in Long Term Care for Households: A Latent Impoverishment
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(1), 295; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17010295 - 01 Jan 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1098
Abstract
Background: Out-of-pocket (OOP) payments are configured as an important source of financing long-term care (LTC). However, very few studies have analyzed the risk of impoverishment and catastrophic effects of OOP in LTC. To estimate the contribution of users to the financing of LTC [...] Read more.
Background: Out-of-pocket (OOP) payments are configured as an important source of financing long-term care (LTC). However, very few studies have analyzed the risk of impoverishment and catastrophic effects of OOP in LTC. To estimate the contribution of users to the financing of LTC and to analyze the economic consequences for households in terms of impoverishment and catastrophism after financial crisis in Spain. Methods: The database that was used is the 2008 Spanish Disability and Dependency Survey, projected to 2012. We analyze the OOP payments effect associated to the impoverishment of households comparing volume and financial situation before and after OOP payment. At the same time, the extent to which OOP payment had led to catastrophism was analyzed using different thresholds. Results: The results show that contribution of dependent people to the financing of the services they receive exceeds by 50% the costs of these services. This expenditure entails an increase in the number of households that live below the poverty. In terms of catastrophism, more than 80% of households dedicate more than 10% of their income to dependency OOP payments. In annual terms, the catastrophe gap generated by devoting more than 10% of the household income to dependent care OOP payment reached €3955, 1 million (0.38% of GDP). Conclusion: This article informs about consequences of OOP in LCT and supplements previous research that focus on health. Our results should serve to develop strategic for protection against the financial risk resulting from facing the costs of a situation of dependence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Crisis and Health)
Article
Financial Fraud, Mental Health, and Quality of Life: A Study on the Population of the City of Madrid, Spain
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(18), 3276; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16183276 - 06 Sep 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1682
Abstract
Over the past few decades, the financial system has engaged in abusive practices that meet the definition of fraud. Our objective is to compare the prevalence of psychological distress and levels of health-related quality of life according to having been exposed to financial [...] Read more.
Over the past few decades, the financial system has engaged in abusive practices that meet the definition of fraud. Our objective is to compare the prevalence of psychological distress and levels of health-related quality of life according to having been exposed to financial fraud and its economic impact on family finances. The City of Madrid Health Survey 2017 included specific questions on exposure to financial fraud—this section was administered to half of the participants (n = 4425). Mental health need or caseness was defined by a score greater than two on the 12-item version of the Goldberg health questionnaire. Health-related quality of life was assessed by the Darmouth Coop Functional Health Assessment Charts/WONCA (COOP/WONCA). The prevalence of financial fraud was 10.8%. The prevalence rate ratio for caseness of those who experienced severe economic impact due to fraud was 1.62 (95%, CI 1.17–2.25; reference: no fraud), after adjustment by age, sex, social class, and immigrant status. Women experienced a decreased quality of life, even with a moderate impact of fraud, while men experienced a decreased quality of life related to fraud with severe economic impact. The current study contributes to a growing body of literature showing the effects of economic shocks on health as a result of financial fraud. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Crisis and Health)
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