Financial crisis causes massive increase in suicide rate
The financial crisis has significantly increased the number of suicides in Europe. In the wake of the financial crisis, more and more people have committed suicide. The suicide rate in European countries rose by up to 17 percent between 2007 and 2009, researchers write in the journal "The Lancet".
The number of suicides has increased significantly in the wake of the financial crisis in Europe, according to a recent study by US and British researchers. David Stuckler from the University of Cambridge (UK), Martin McKee from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (UK) and Sanjay Basu from the University of California (USA) report in the journal "The Lancet" that the suicide rate rose in 90 percent of the nations examined during the financial crisis. At the same time, unemployment increased by a third. According to the researchers, however, the number of traffic accidents has decreased significantly over the same period, which is due to the reduced mobility in economically bad times.
Suicide rate massively increased by the financial crisis According to the British and US researchers, the suicide rate increased massively, especially in Europe, during the financial crisis. In the course of their study, the scientists had shown that between 2007 and 2009 a growing number of people of working age committed suicide. The rate of suicide has risen in nine out of ten nations examined, said David Stuckler, Martin McKee and Sanjay Basu. Suicide rates among people under the age of 65 in European countries increased by up to 17 percent during the financial crisis. David Stuckler emphasized that "before the recession, the number of suicides" continued to decrease "to then rise in almost all of the European countries studied." According to the British scientist, "this increase is almost certainly due to the financial crisis." that the steady downward trend in suicides during the financial crisis suddenly turned around.
Greece and Ireland most affected The trends in the most affected countries such as Greece and Ireland can be observed most clearly, write Stuckler, McKee and Basu. While the newly joined European countries saw only a relatively moderate increase in suicide rates, the number of suicides in Greece, for example, has increased massively, the researchers explained. The suicide rate in the battered Mediterranean state has risen by 17 percent. Overall, suicides rose by an average of around five percent in all EU countries in 2009, the experts report. An exception to the current study was Austria, where the suicide rate continued to decline despite the financial crisis. As an explanation for this, the researchers cited a lower burden from the financial crisis than in other European countries. According to the scientists, further data analyzes are necessary to be able to make concrete statements, but it can already be seen that the “countries that faced the greatest problems, such as Greece and Ireland, had particularly high growth rates of 17 and 13 percent “Have been recorded in suicides. However, the financial crisis also had a positive effect: the number of fatalities had declined significantly, since the volume of traffic was correspondingly lower in poorer economic times, the researchers explained.
Health consequences of the financial crisis The scientists also warned of the further possible health consequences that could result from such financial crises. Because the financial problems, the economic uncertainty and the increased pressure bring with it an increased feeling of stress, which can trigger additional health problems, explained David Stuckler and colleagues. For example, if the economically difficult times persist, long-term increases in heart and cancer diseases can also be expected. In addition, an increase in mental illnesses can be assumed, which according to the current studies by the German health insurance companies has already started in Germany. In February, the Techniker Krankenkasse published the figures for 2010, which again confirmed a massive increase in mental disorders such as depression. The health report 2011 of the German employee health insurance came to similar results, however, a possible connection with the financial crisis was not considered further in the investigations of the health insurance. (fp)
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