The new study, conducted Thursday, is one of the first studies to measure deaths during a pandemic caused by the economic devastation caused by the virus, not the virus itself. The study estimates that the unemployment surge seen last spring has caused an additional 30,000 deaths in working-age adults in the United States over the past year.
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) have examined a variety of data sources to calculate numbers, including government-collected unemployment and mortality data reported in 2020. Last year, the highest reported monthly unemployment rate was 14.7% in April. 2020-Seen since the Great Depression. They then mapped that data to historical estimates that a sudden rise in unemployment could contribute to excess mortality that would not have happened otherwise.
According to their calculations, the spring decline in pandemic-related work will lead to an excessive death toll of 30,231 Americans between the ages of 25 and 64 from April 2020 to March 2021.
Team survey results, Release There is some uncertainty in the American Journal of Public Health. Use different assumptions about the risk of increased mortality from unemployment or rely on different measures of unemployment (for example, those who can work but are not currently seeking work as unemployed, but others People are not). Therefore, in various scenarios, pandemic-related unemployment-related deaths ranged from a minimum of 8,315 to a maximum of 201,968.
The results of this study are based solely on modeling the expected number of deaths and cannot accurately indicate the cause of these deaths. However, unemployment is known to cause damage to physical and mental health. This is because people often lose their health insurance. The role of suicide, one presumptive factor, is less clear.Some early evidence Suggestion It is unlikely that suicide will increase significantly in the United States last year. Yet other data show other health problems that may be associated with the surge in unemployment. Overdose of drugs, More popular.
What is clear is that the effects of these excessive mortality were not equally shared among the various racial and socio-economic groups of Americans, as were those directly due to viral illness. Studies show that about 72% of these excess deaths were associated with Americans without a college degree, but this group accounts for only 37% of all Americans of working age. Black Americans, men, and people over the age of 45 were also more likely to die disproportionately in the analysis.
It is difficult to distinguish the indirect effects of natural disasters, especially the indirect effects of ongoing disasters as long as the covid-19 pandemic continues. Some argue that aggressive measures to contain the pandemic are counterproductive to reducing potential unemployment, sometimes including the closure of businesses such as bars and restaurants. However, in some countries, including New Zealand, these measures have been able to completely stop the pandemic epidemic within the border. to approve They bounce strongly from the recession.
In any case, the United States It’s not doing a good job of stopping the pandemic. Nearly 500,000 people are directly attributed to covid-19., Or Keep Americans in financial difficulty on a solid foundation.Some of these are probably Death could simply have been prevented with better policy — a lesson that the author hopes can learn in the second year of covid-19.
“Many different programs and policies can help prevent unemployment-related deaths and disproportionate impacts on vulnerable communities,” said the lead author, a postdoctoral fellow at the UCSF Health and Community Center. Jericot Masai told Gizmodo by email. “Most notable are (1) more generous and extended unemployment benefits with broader eligibility criteria, (2) programs that promote rapid reemployment after unemployment, and (3) health insurance and mental health / Includes increased access to substances. Use the service, especially for those who have been hit hardest. “
This article has been updated with comments from the lead author of the study.
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