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Poverty and InequalitySexual and Reproductive HealthFamily, Maternal & Child HealthMethodology

Mortgage delinquency and changes in access to health resources and depressive symptoms in a nationally representative cohort of americans older than 50 years

TitleMortgage delinquency and changes in access to health resources and depressive symptoms in a nationally representative cohort of americans older than 50 years
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsAlley, DE, Lloyd, J, Pagan, JA, Pollack, CE, Shardell, M, Cannuscio, C
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Volume101
Pagination2293-2298
Date PublishedDec
ISBN Number1541-0048; 0090-0036
Accession Number22021301
Keywords*Economic Recession, *Health Services Accessibility, *Health Status, Depression/diagnosis/*etiology, Drug Costs, Female, Housing/*economics, Humans, Male, Medication adherence, Middle Aged, Socioeconomic Factors, Stress, Psychological/etiology, United States
Abstract

OBJECTIVES: We evaluated associations between mortgage delinquency and changes in health and health-relevant resources over 2 years, with data from the Health and Retirement Study, a longitudinal survey representative of US adults older than 50 years. METHODS: In 2008, participants reported whether they had fallen behind on mortgage payments since 2006 (n = 2474). We used logistic regression to compare changes in health (incidence of elevated depressive symptoms, major declines in self-rated health) and access to health-relevant resources (food, prescription medications) between participants who fell behind on their mortgage payments and those who did not. RESULTS: Compared with nondelinquent participants, the mortgage-delinquent group had worse health status and less access to health-relevant resources at baseline. They were also significantly more likely to develop incident depressive symptoms (odds ratio [OR] = 8.60; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 3.38, 21.85), food insecurity (OR = 7.53; 95% CI = 3.01, 18.84), and cost-related medication nonadherence (OR = 8.66; 95% CI = 3.72, 20.16) during follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Mortgage delinquency was associated with significant elevations in the incidence of mental health impairments and health-relevant material disadvantage. Widespread mortgage default may have important public health implications.

PMCID

3222434