In this article, we are looking at whether Brexit has had an effect on Britain’s health.
It’s been a extraordinary couple of years since the referendum, where the British people decided to move in a different direction and leave the EU.
Much has happened since, and uncertainty has reigned. But is it affecting our health and wellbeing?
What does the medical profession say about Brexit?
In June 2018, Dr William Sapwell proposed a motion for Britain to remain within the common market and for the general public to hold a people’s vote, mentioning that: ‘Britain is woefully underprepared’ for Brexit and that ‘Brexit is awful for Britain’s wellbeing’.
The BMA debated the motion at their annual assembly.
Furthermore, Dr John Chisholm from the BMA scientific ethics committee, told delegates on the assembly that ‘Brexit became a disastrous act of self-harm’ and that the European Union played a vital part within the NHS and medical technology for Britain.
What are the consequences of Brexit on health?
The figures concerning recruitment and retention are particularly extraordinary. This is essentially because the NHS and the Social Care sector both rely closely on European employees to meet the volume of care needed by society. An ageing population does not help.
According to the Prince’s Trust, the NHS is already understaffed by some 100,000 positions, and wider social care by 110,000. The U.K has more physicians who qualified overseas than all other EU states except Ireland and Norway. Additionally, the number of nurses and midwives becoming qualified has dropped dramatically since the referendum.
Add this to the reported future scarcity of medicines that will result and the Brexit outlook is a little bleak.
Has Brexit had an impact on our wellbeing?
Recent studies have shown that one in four Britons will suffer a mental health disorder over the next twelve months, with a projected 8% suffering depression.
Whislt figures confirming any connection to Brexit are tough to come across, there’s certainly a link between mental health and extended use of social media.
Furthermore, since the Brexit referendum, the level of hate crimes towards minority groups has risen sharply; and mental health issues such as general anxiety disease, panic attacks, depression and suicidal ideation are on the rise. Other impacts on mental health that may be connected to Brexit include the uncertainty of the jobs market.
How are we able to mitigate the effect of Brexit on health?
Brexit is a high-tension topic.
One manner of dealing with the associated problems is to provide help to colleagues who can be feeling stressed, or to speak to friends who you could suspect may be suffering anxiety.
Furthermore, in the case of HR departments and business owners, you may wish to pursue employee health and wellness options to help improve the situation.