Health and unemployment

Author: Annette Bergemann, And Erik Grönqvist, And Soffia Guðbjörnsdóttir, And
Dnr: 95/2009

Losing the job can have a number of direct negative consequences for your economic and social situation. But unemployment can also affect your health through increased stress or the adoption of a less healthy lifestyle; e.g. changed alcohol and nutrition habits. We study the health effects of losing one’s job; in particular the effect on diabetes incidence and prevalence. We utilise situations where all or a large share of employees at an establishment lose their job at the same time. In these situations, the employers does not have the opportunity to selectively lay off workers on basis of their health.
The analysis is based on labour market data that have been matched to health data from the National Board of Health and Welfare and the National diabetes register. The project is part of IFAU’s larger programme “Labour Market Effects of Social Insurance” (Reg No 85/2004).