Austerity Kills! Bank Of Greece Admits "Greeks' Health Deteriorating, Life Expectancy Shrinks"

Tyler Durden's picture


The economic crisis and the strict austerity bound to the Greek bailout agreement kills. They kill Greeks. The Bank of Greece may not write it in such a melodramatic way on its Monetary Policy Report 2015-2016. However, the conclusions in the chapter about “Reforms in health, economic crisis and impact on the health of population” are shocking and confirm what we have been hearing and reading around from relatives and friends in the last years: that the physical and mental health of Greeks has been  deteriorating – partly due to economic insecurity, high unemployment, job insecurity, income decrease and constant exposure to stress. Partly also due to economic problems that have patients cut their treatment, partly due to the incredible cuts and shortages in the public health system.

The Report notes that “while it takes longer to record the exact effect, trends show a deterioration of the health of Greeks in the years of loan agreements and austerity cuts.”

The BoG states:

Suicides increased. “The risk of suicidal behavior increases when there are so-called primary risk factors (psychiatric-medical conditions), while the secondary factors (economic situation) and tertiary factors (age, gender) affects the risk of suicide, but only if primary risk factors pre-exist.


Infant mortality increased by nearly 50%, mainly due to increase of deaths of infants younger than one year, and the decline of births by 22,1%. Infant mortality increase: 2.65% in 2008 and 3.75% in 2014


– Increase of parts of population with mental illness, especially with depression. Increase:  3.,3% in 2008 to 6.8% in 2009, to 8.2% in 2011 and to 12.3% in 2013. In 2014, a 4.7% of the population above 15 years old declared it suffered form depression – that was 2.6% in 2009.


-Increase of chronic diseases increased by approximately 24%.

The BoG notes that “the large cuts in public expenditure have not been accompanied by changes and improvement of the health system in order to limit the consequences for the weakest citizens and vulnerable groups of the society.”

The report of the Governor of the Bank of Greece reckons surveys conducted by Greek Statistic Authorities (ELSTAT) and according to which:

  1. a significant increase of 24.2% of people aged 15+ suffering from chronic health problem or chronic disease.

  2. increase of more than 15% of people who limited their activities due to health problems in 2014.

  3. percentage of low-weight (below 2.5 kg) births increased by 19% in 2008-2010, and that this is associated with long-term negative effects on the health and the development of children.

Citing OECD data of 2013, the BoG underlines that 79% of the population in Greece was not covered with insurance and therefore without medical and medicine due to long-term unemployment, while self-employed could not afford to pay their social contributions.

A survey conducted in 2014 by ELSTAT showed that part of population above 15 years old was in need of medical help but did not receive it due to lack of financial means:

13% of population did not receive medical care or treatment


15.4% of population did not receive dental care of treatment


4.3% of population did not receive mental health care services


11.2% did not take the prescription medicine prescribed by doctors.

The same survey shows a decrease in private hospital admissions and increase in public hospital with the effect that public hospitals are not able to cope with the increase demands due to austerity budget and personnel cuts. Public hospital admission in 2009 were 1.6 million, and 2.5 million in 2014.

According to the survey, percentage of population that needed to receive medical-nursing care and received it in delay or not at all was:

13.1% due to long waiting list


6.1% due to long distance or transportation problems


9.4% due to lack of specialized doctors and health personnel.

The BoG report warns that the economic crisis and the devaluation of the health sector threaten to shrink the life-expectancy.

Everyone who lives in Greece knows very well the drug with the long waiting lists in to get an appointment for an medical examination or a diagnostic checks in public hospitals. In some cases the next appoint for a simple check may take up to a year. Due to merging of hospitals and primary health centers, people may need to travel even 120 km to find the doctor they need. Just a couple of days ago, KTG posted about the dramatic situation in Ierapetra town in south Crete and the people in their despair would rather seek the help of a local veterinarian than a doctor for humans.

However, the crisis does not affect the patients only. It affects the health personnel as well. It was just two days ago, when a friend of mine, a doctor specialized in vascular diseases was telling me that while he was always keeping the necessary distance to patients he has started to be affected because people are really suffering due to the economic crisis. “There is a lot of drama out there, and I cannot close my eyes to it.” he said.

One of the neighborhood pharmacists has been telling me on and off about the dramatic number of patients who cannot afford the self-participation in prescription medicine. Many of his clients cut their treatment into half – like 1 tablet for cholesterol not daily but every other day basis – and that some have given up the whole treatment. “For some people the choice is: either have treatment or food.”

And this has been going on since 2012, when then Greek Health Minister adopted the German model of “self-participation in prescription medicine, laboratory tests” and cut some primary health services but forgot to adopt also that aspect of the German model that provides that patients would not spend more than 2% of their income for medical services and medication.

But I’ve written many times about this in the past, haven’t I? I thought to give a break to the “Greek drama” but reality is stronger than the blogger’s wishes and plans.

Source: Bank of Greece Report, other details here, here

P.S. life-expectancy will shrink? I suppose the creditors would be more than happy about it as people will die, pensions will not be paid and insurance funds will be saved.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
wee-weed up's picture

The EU is going to squeeze every drop of blood out of that turnip.

OldPhart's picture

Eventually we're all going to forced to go Greek.

NidStyles's picture

Economic oppression is now considered saving an economy now. Orwellian to the core.

TruthHunter's picture

It's not austerity that kills. The groundwork was laid years ago.

Spending like there's no tomorrow means there is no tomorrow.

Rabbi Chaim Cohen's picture

Exactly. Suicides, depression, low weight? Sounds like most of the complaints that they were able to gin up for this "whine" piece are from a people that are forced to consume less in a consumption-driven society. They are therefore unhappy. What can be said here, if you believe in free lunches you will not be pleased with the long term outcome of socialism when you have a tepid economy in the best of times and too many 52 year old retirees expecting to live for 30 years on the public dole. Reality is never optional.

JRobby's picture

How Financialization kills

Brought to you by the global elites 

mantrid's picture

it's not austerity, it's taxterity

ANestIOS's picture

The EU decided that propping up the bankrupt banking system takes priority over peoples lives and not only in greece

JRobby's picture

The banking system will continue to be propped up so the theft and oppression can continue.

When a bank "fails" someone in that bank stepped out of line and is cut out of the game to the benefit of other obedient banks.

Jayda1850's picture

Austerity doesn't kill, but debt does.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

You beat me to it. I was gonna say

"Austerity doesn't kill. FRAUD does."

Solio's picture

All while the bankers bought more castes and precious gems. Somebody had to pay for that stuff.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Speaking of Fraud -- Monetary, Financial, Economic, Political -- AU is dropping again.

Why? Because TPTB feel they got the Brexit thing back under control, now that a UK politician (a woman, no less) has been murdered.

Color me shocked.

VWAndy's picture

 Planet Fraud? The hole dang thing.

dogismycopilot's picture

I am sure the EU masters in Brussels aren't missing any meals.

css1971's picture

Bank Of Greece Admits


What the fuck does this have to do with the Bank of Greece?


It's the admission it's money that matters, government policies are damned near irrelevant. Or, put another way. Bankers kill.

Bopper09's picture

Women doctors still hookin' then?

SmittyinLA's picture

A diseased 3rd world invasion of people that die young has nothing to do with it, it's just a coincidence

GreatUncle's picture

Greece made its choice to stay in the EU / EZ - there is not much more to say after that.

For the first time seeing the word EU I though "the undemocratic EU commission" so what they say goes and that is the bit you have to accept ... else leave.

It is their game, their party, accept their rules or get out but that you have to accept if you want to be part of their gang.

NO YOUR GOVENMENT WILL NOT MAKE THE CHOICE YOU WANT BECAUSE THAT IS NOT WHAT THEY WANT so the politicial side will overrule your wants for their wants.

overmedicatedundersexed's picture

lies lies lies...greece keeps paying the debt..cause it's leaders are paid to do so. I expect greek families to begin selling their children in future to deviates like the clinton foundation for rides on the lolita express. human suffering so a few investors (banks) get paid. the sword of allah comes from the empty belly of the poor.

two hoots's picture

Consequences....past and present.  

brushhog's picture

Read an interesting thing about "life expectancy". It's actually been going DOWN for adults for almost 200 years. Infant mortalities are far, far, lower today as are child mortalities thanks to vaccines. This caused the overall life expectancy to rise dramatically. However, a census was taken in 1832 of people living in the US over 100. It was found that at that time there were 1 persons out of every 4500 who were 100 years of age or older. Today that number is 1 out of 35,000. So a person at age 60, living in 1832, had almost 10 times the likelihood of making it to 100 than a person today.

That was before any of the drugs, the insurance, and the alleged "modern medical care". Just clean air, clean water, natural food and a lifetime of physical activity.

Berspankme's picture

Very true. Avg life expectancy numbers greatly skewed by infant mortality imagine if they counted abortions as zeros

Seek_Truth's picture

More like "imagine if they counted abortions as 0.3"


PS- Those aborted (murderered) human infants actually lived, on average, 4 months before being visciouslly ripped apart alive. Molech worship is alive and well.

truthalwayswinsout's picture

Ever since the Ottoman Empire Greece has been playing the middle man in a balance of power game. They have been scamming everybody and everyone who will listen. Now is it a play between NATO and Russia and the creation of pipelines to bring all the gas found in the Mediterranean to Europe.


Greeks are the consummate con artists and if you listen them them you deserve to lose.

ToSoft4Truth's picture

Greeks accept and and so should we. 



Baby Eating Dingo22's picture

Same plan in USA to get rid of drain aging baby boomers create

Make health care unaffordable and they die off faster

G_T_A_44's picture

That (Fleecing of Nation/Deaths) was the exact purpose/intent when Blankfein and Paulsen visited Greece early '00 and directed Greece in how to cook their books and gain entry into the EUR whereby, the rape & pillage of the nation and ultimately, the death of hundreds of thousands being the ultimate objective. Mission accomplished. GS performing Gods Work.

AdolphLustig's picture
AdolphLustig (not verified) Jun 17, 2016 7:28 AM

Hey folks, whatever is good for the (((jew banker$)))

financialrealist's picture

mission accomplished...thinning the welfare state...coming soon to a country near you. 

zob2020's picture

well greece is overpopulated. 4 million is much better than 10 million. Better employment opportunities too with better wages as the economy adjusts to a smaller population. Then the taxes can be raised and living standards improved for the political class :)

yellowsub's picture

I thought their Meditteranean diet is supposed to make you live longer?!

S Spade's picture

socialism kills, communism (the end state of socialism) kills, robbing then spending other peoples money kills, financing today with the future kills, debt kills...