Effects of the economic crisis on demand due to mental disorders in Asturias: data from the Asturias Cumulative Psychiatric Case Register (2000-2010)

Actas Esp Psiquiatr. 2014 May-Jun;42(3):108-15. Epub 2014 May 1.


Introduction: The economic crisis has negative effects on the population’s physical and mental health. Our objective has been to study the association between socioeconomic status and number of people demanding mental health services.

Methods: We performed a correlation analysis of administrative morbidity data (incidence and prevalence) of mental illness (obtained from the Asturias Cumulative Psychiatric Case Register) and three economic indicators (unemployment, consumer price index and gross domestic product).

Results: The increase in the unemployment rate is associated with a clear decrease in both new and prevalent mental health demand. CPI has a minor weak positive correlation with the administrative incidence of some mental disorders (Neurotic disorders, Schizophrenia and addictions). GDP does not show a significant correlation with the administrative incidence and it is strongly associated with an increased administrative prevalence that is more intense in the case of alcoholism, neurotic disorders, mental retardation and Z codes (ICD-10).

Conclusion: The variation of the socioeconomic indicated observed in the economic crisis period in Asturias was not associated with increased care demand for any mental disorders. There is a negative correlation of unemployment rate with care demand.

MeSH terms

  • Economic Recession*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Mental Disorders / therapy
  • Mental Health Services / supply & distribution*
  • Registries
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Spain
  • Time Factors