We examine how deaths and emergency department (ED) visits related to use of opioid analgesics (opioids) and other drugs vary with macroeconomic conditions. As the county unemployment rate increases by one percentage point, the opioid death rate per 100,000 rises by 0.19 (3.6%) and the opioid overdose ED visit rate per 100,000 increases by 0.95 (7.0%). Macroeconomic shocks also increase the overall drug death rate, but this increase is driven by rising opioid deaths. Our findings hold when performing a state-level analysis, rather than county-level; are primarily driven by adverse events among whites; and are stable across time periods.
Background: Poor mental health has large social and economic consequences both for the individual and society. In Sweden, the prevalence of mental health symptoms has increased since the beginning of the 1990s. There is a need for a better understanding of the area for planning preventive activities and health care. Methods: The study is based on a postal survey questionnaire sent to a random sample of men and women aged 18-84 years in 2004. The overall response rate was 64%. The area investigated covers 55 municipalities with about one million inhabitants in central part of Sweden. The study population includes 42,448 respondents. Mental health was measured with self-reported symptoms of anxiety/depression (EQ-5D, 5th question). The association between socio-economic conditions, lifestyle factors and mental health symptoms was investigated using multivariate multinomial logistic regression models. Results: About 40% of women and 30% of men reported that they were moderately or extremely anxious or depressed. Younger subjects reported poorer mental health than older subjects, the best mental health was found at ages 65-74 years. Factors that were strongly and independently related to mental health symptoms were poor social support, experiences of being belittled, employment status (receiving a disability pension and unemployment), economic hardship, critical life events, and functional disability. A strong association was also found between how burdensome domestic work was experienced and anxiety/depression. This was true for both men and women. Educational level was not associated with mental health symptoms. Of lifestyle factors, physical inactivity, underweight and risk consumption of alcohol were independently associated with mental health symptoms. Conclusion: Our results support the notion that a ground for good mental health includes balance in social relations, in domestic work and in employment as well as in personal economy both among men and women. In addition, physical inactivity, underweight and risk consumption of alcohol are associated with mental health symptoms independent of socio-economic factors.
This paper considers the relationship between economic conditions and health with a focus on different approaches to geographic aggregation. After reviewing the tradeoffs associated with more- and less-disaggregated analyses, I update earlier state-level analyses of mortality and infant health and then consider how the estimated effects vary when the analysis is conducted at differing levels of geographic aggregation. This analysis reveals that the results are sensitive to the level of geographic aggregation with more-disaggregated analyses—particularly county-level analyses—routinely producing estimates that are smaller in magnitude. Further analyses suggest this is due to spillover effects of economic conditions on health outcomes across counties.
Economic conditions are typically viewed as having an important influence on environmental policy. In particular, it is widely believed that under adverse economic conditions, electorates and governments prioritize economic growth and jobs over costly ecological restraint. The empirical evidence for this received wisdom, however, remains surprisingly contradictory. We contribute to this debate by studying a case where the odds of the economy-environment trade-off claim holding true should be high: an emerging economy in severe recession, and environmental policy with high short-term costs and long-term benefits. Based on a representative survey (N = 2449) in Brazil, implemented in late 2015/early 2016, we examine how ego- and socio-tropic economic conditions, both perceived and real, affect citizens’ preferences concerning the mitigation of deforestation and climate change. We find no robust evidence for an economy-environment trade-off. The main policy implication is that, from a public opinion perspective, there is considerable room for ambitious environmental policy even under adverse economic conditions.
In this article we analyze the conditioning effect of party nationalization, and in particular dynamic nationalization, on economic voting. While previous single-country and cross-national studies suggest a weak correlation between economic conditions and voting patterns, we argue that this relationship is conditioned by the degree to which parties are dynamically nationalized. Using both case study and large-n analysis, we show first that retrospective voting can be more nationalized than prospective voting. We then argue that national economic conditions cannot and do not relate to voting patterns, at least when weak dynamic nationalization is weak. The findings also call into question the well-known thesis about the clarity of responsibility as a conditional factor in explaining retrospective (economic) voting. There is imperfect correspondence between “clarity of responsibility” and dynamic party nationalization, but retrospective voting presumes that voters across the country respond in kind. This explains why the only evidence we find of a correlation of national economic indicators and voting is when there is high dynamic nationalization.
We analyze the effect of economic conditions early in life on individual mortality rate later in life, using business cycle conditions early in life as an exogenous indicator. Individual records from Dutch registers of birth, marriage, and death, covering a window of unprecedented size (1912-2000) are merged with historical data on macroeconomic and health indicators. We correct for secular changes over time and other mortality determinants. We nonparametrically compare those born in a recession to those born in the preceding boom, and we estimate duration models where the individual's mortality rate depends on current conditions, conditions early in life, age individual characteristics, including individual socio-economic indicators, and interaction terms. The results indicate a significant negative effect of economic conditions early in life on individual mortality rates at all ages.