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‘First, do no harm’ : are disability assessments associated with adverse trends in mental health? A longitudinal ecological study

BARR, B
et al
November 2015

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“In England between 2010 and 2013, just over one million recipients of the main out-of-work disability benefit had their eligibility reassessed using a new functional checklist—the Work Capability Assessment. Doctors and disability rights organisations have raised concerns that this has had an adverse effect on the mental health of claimants, but there are no population level studies exploring the health effects of this or similar policies… Here the researchers used multivariable regression to investigate whether variation in the trend in reassessments in each of 149 local authorities in England was associated with differences in local trends in suicides, self-reported mental health problems and antidepressant prescribing rates, while adjusting for baseline conditions and trends in other factors known to influence mental ill-health”

 

Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, doi:10.1136/jech-2015-206209

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