Greeks curb intake of medicine due to crisis

One in three Greeks have reduced their intake of medicines as part of belt-tightening made necessary by the economic crisis, according to a new survey which also found that six in 10 feel the crisis has had a negative impact on their health.

According to the survey, which was conducted by Kapa Research for the National School of Public Health and whose findings were made public on Thursday, 28.4 percent of Greeks admitted to “spacing out” their consumption of drugs for their ailments to ensure the medicine lasts longer.

Six in 10 of the 1,227 respondents said the crisis had affected their health while just over half admitted that they struggled to purchase the medicines they required.

The survey also asked respondents about their key fears and insecurities related to the crisis. Nine in 10 named a lack of justice while eight in 10 cited unemployment, poverty and sickness.

The repercussions of the economic crisis have also led to an increase in mental illness, according to experts who report that the waiting time to see a mental health specialist has increased from 15 days to 2.5 months in some parts of Greece.

The crisis has also fueled an increase in suicides, which before the crisis hit in 2010 had often not been reported by Greek families over fears of social stigma.

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