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The Economics of Gender and Mental Illness

ISBN: 978-0-76231-111-8, eISBN: 978-1-84950-274-0

Publication date: 5 October 2004


Women are nearly twice as likely as men to suffer a major depressive episode (Kessler et al., 1994). Risk of onset for single mothers is twice that of married mothers and financial hardship also doubles the risk of becoming depressed (Brown & Moran, 1997). If diagnosed, depression can be effectively treated, typically with pharmacotherapy or psychotherapy or some combination of the two (Goldman et al., 1999; Sirey et al., 1999). But a sizable majority of sufferers remain undiagnosed and untreated (Lennon et al., 2001). Such treatment can be prohibitively expensive to patients who lack health insurance, particularly those with few financial resources. Although most low-income women have a safety net in Medicaid, welfare reform’s delinking of Medicaid from welfare cash assistance has left uncovered many who are eligible for the benefits (Garrett & Holahan, 2000).


Roberts, A.A. (2004), "INSURANCE STATUS OF DEPRESSED LOW-INCOME WOMEN", Marcotte, D.E. and Wilcox, V. (Ed.) The Economics of Gender and Mental Illness (Research in Human Capital and Development, Vol. 15), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 177-193.



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