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Government and Political_Determinant pag

Government decisions, including laws, policies, taxation, and funding decisions have big effects on people’s lives and their mental health.

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Risk and/or Protective Factor

Government decisions, including laws, policies, taxation, and funding decisions have big effects on people’s lives and their mental health.

For example, higher taxation may support the development of high quality public services and has been linked to positive effects on well-being; as long as living standards are not impaired (1).

Reductions in government funding for public and welfare services (including education, transport, social care and benefits) have been associated with greater distress (2) and increased suicide rates (3). Government spending cuts can disproportionally affect certain groups, such as those who have low income, families with children, and those reliant on benefits (4).

Consumption of risk factors, such as alcohol, can be obstructed by implementing policies which increase sale prices, such as Minimum Unit Pricing, or which restrict availability at night (5,6).

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References

1.        Akay A, Bargain O, Dolls M, Neumann D, Peichl A, Siegloch S. Happy Taxpayers? Income Taxation and Well-Being. 2012.

2.        Cummins I. The Impact of Austerity on Mental Health Service Provision: A UK Perspective. Int J Environ Res Public Health [Internet]. 2018 Jun 1 [cited 2021 Jan 25];15(6):1145. Available from: http://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/15/6/1145

3.        Barr B, Taylor-Robinson D, Stuckler D, Loopstra R, Reeves A, Wickham S, et al. Fit-for-work or fit-for-unemployment? Does the reassessment of disability benefit claimants using a tougher work capability assessment help people into work? J Epidemiol Community Health [Internet]. 2015 Dec 8 [cited 2021 Feb 12];70(5):452–8. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech-2015-206333

4.        Economic and Social Research Council. Evidence Briefings, Welfare budget and benefit cuts [Internet]. 2015 Jul [cited 2021 Feb 15]. Available from: https://esrc.ukri.org/files/news-events-and-publications/evidence-briefings/welfare-budget-and-benefit-cuts/

5.        Xhurxhi IP. The early impact of Scotland’s minimum unit pricing policy on alcohol prices and sales. Health Econ [Internet]. 2020 Dec 15 [cited 2021 Mar 1];29(12):1637–56. Available from: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/hec.4156

6.        Burton R, Henn C, Lavoie D, O’Connor R, Perkins C, Sweeney K, et al. The Public Health Burden of Alcohol and the Effectiveness and Cost-Effectiveness of Alcohol Control Policies An evidence review. London; 2016.

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