The Impact of Health on Political Attitudes: Does Suffering from a Hampering Health Condition Make Individuals More Egalitarian?
The study of the impact of hampering health conditions on political behavior is particularly relevant in light of current debates about the government’s role in ensuring access to healthcare, and the extent to which it should cover associated costs. As we are living in a COVID-19 era, the topic of healthcare has never been so ubiquitous throughout our contemporary history. Once we enter the post-pandemic stage, one can expect the topic of healthcare to be at the core of global policy debates, raising the question of major changes in health policies worldwide. Nonetheless, with advances in research and technology, our modern world observes a reduction in diseased-related mortality and an increase in life expectancy as compared to the past. But technological progress comes at a cost: patients who would have died from their medical condition in the past now have to live with it. Over the past decades, psychophysiologists have shown a growing interest in the impact of physiological states and systems on psychological states and processes. Using cross-national data from the European Social Survey, this paper examines the relationship between health and political attitudes. More specifically, it attempts to understand the extent to which individual health can predict placement on the left-right political scale. The results of my analysis suggest a significantly positive correlation between poor health and affiliation with the political left, which upholds the principles of egalitarianism and social equality. This relationship applies to hampering conditions as a whole, but also to physical conditions and depression separately. In the context of a common human experience like the COVID-19 pandemic, my findings have important implications for health policy. They make the case for improving healthcare from both sides of the political spectrum. More specifically, they predict a trajectory toward better and more accessible healthcare by blurring partisan divergence on the matter and leading to consensus.
MetadataShow full item record
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Dignity Not Fully Upheld When Seeking Health Care: Experiences Expressed by Individuals Suffering From Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Berglund, Britta; Anne-Cathrine, Mattiasson; Randers, Ingrid (2010)AIM: The principle of human dignity has assumed importance in ethics and constitutional law throughout the 20th century in the Western world. It calls for respect of each individual as unique, and of treating him or her ...