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Austerity and health: the impact in the UK and Europe

Stuckler, David, Reeves, Aaron, Loopstra, Rachel, Karanikolos, Marina and McKee, Martin (2017) Austerity and health: the impact in the UK and Europe. European Journal of Public Health, 27 (4). pp. 18-21. ISSN 1101-1262

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Identification Number: 10.1093/eurpub/ckx167


Austerity measures—reducing social spending and increasing taxation—hurts deprived groups the most. Less is known about the impact on health. In this short review, we evaluate the evidence of austerity’s impact on health, through two main mechanisms: a ‘social risk effect’ of increasing unemployment, poverty, homelessness and other socio-economic risk factors (indirect), and a ‘healthcare effect’ through cuts to healthcare services, as well as reductions in health coverage and restricting access to care (direct). We distinguish those impacts of economic crises from those of austerity as a response to it. Where possible, data from across Europe will be drawn upon, as well as more extensive analysis of the UK’s austerity measures performed by the authors of this review.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2017 The Author CC BY 4.0
Divisions: International Inequalities Institute
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
Date Deposited: 01 Dec 2017 12:24
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 02:33
Funders: Wellcome Trust

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