The Indirect Economic Impacts of Co-Morbidities on People With Depression

Document Information

Journal Article

  • Published: May 2013
  • Authors: Deborah Schofield, Emily Callander, Rupendra Shrestha, Megan Passey, Richard Percival and Simon Kelly
  • Journal Title: Journal of Psychiatric Research
  • Journal Volume: 47
  • Number: 6
  • Article Pages: 796-801
  • Journal ISSN: 1879-1379; 0022-3956
  • Research Area: Health, Disability and Ageing


It is known that people with depression often have other co-morbid conditions; however this is rarely acknowledged in studies that access the economic impacts of depression. This paper aims to quantify the association between co-morbid health conditions and labour force status and economic circumstances of people with depression. This study undertakes cross-sectional analysis using a dataset that is representative of the 45–64 year old Australian population with depression. The probability of being out of the labour force increases with increasing number of co-morbidities, and the amount of weekly income received by people with depression decreased with increasing numbers of co-morbidities. Those with depression and three or more co-morbidities were 4.31 times more likely to be out of the labour force (95% CI: 1.74–10.68), and received a weekly private income 88% lower (95% CI: −94%, −75%) than people with depression alone. It is important to consider the co-morbid conditions an individual has when assessing the impact of depression on labour force participation and economic circumstances


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