Study: Mental Health Issues linked to Universal Credit

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This month saw a Lancet publication of a research study of the Mental Health issues that have been linked to the introduction of Universal Credit.

Universal  Credit, as you probably know is the controversial welfare  benefit  reform  which began  to  replace  six  existing  benefit  schemes back in 2013,  starting  with  income-based  Job  Seekers  Allowance.

The study followed over 50,000 people for a ten year period, and findings  suggest  that  the  introduction  of  Universal  Credit  led  to  a clinically significant increase  in  psychological  distress, a measure of mental health difficulties, among those affected by the policy.

Their recommendation is that future changes to government welfare systems should be evaluated not only on a fiscal basis but on their potential to affect health and wellbeing.

Full study is available here: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanpub/article/PIIS2468-2667(20)30026-8/fulltext(20)30026-8/fulltext