Source: Economic Research Forum
Author(s): Maia Sieverding and Rasha Hassan
There is a well-established relationship between economic vulnerability and health. The study of this relationship is complicated by reverse causality – poor economic outcomes contribute to poor health and poor health can lead to worse economic outcomes. Yet even descriptive studies of the relationship between economic and health outcomes are lacking in the Middle East and North Africa region. The Egypt Labor Market Panel Survey 2018 includes a range of new health measures, including the UN-Washington Group disability instrument, self-rated health, and the WHO-5 subjective wellbeing scale that allow us for the first time to conduct a detailed examination of the associations between economic vulnerability and health in the Egyptian population. We find a substantial burden of poor health among the working age and older populations in Egypt, particularly along measures of disability and subjective wellbeing. Several groups emerge as particularly vulnerable to poor health across health outcomes, including divorced women, the urban poor and particularly poor urban women, and those in precarious and hazardous forms of employment. Further multivariate studies are needed to disentangle the relationships between multiple forms of economic vulnerability and poor health.
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