Harvard Pop Center Director Lisa Berkman, PhD, is co-author of a study published in Social Science & Medicine that explores the relationship between comprehensive maternity leave benefits and women’s mental health in later life, based on evidence from European countries. The researchers, including Pop Center faculty member and former Bell Fellow Mauricio Avendano, PhD, who is lead author on the study, along with Giacomo Pasini, PhD, who was a visiting scientist at the Harvard Pop Center during the month of January, found that women who received more generous maternity leave benefits with their first born child experienced better mental health that extended in older age.
Harvard Pop Center affiliated faculty member Theresa Betancourt, Sc.D., and colleagues have published a study in Pediatrics that suggests that HIV-affected children (those living with an HIV-positive caretaker) could benefit from the same type of policies and programs that have helped HIV-positive children.
A 24-year prospective cohort study authored by Harvard RWJF Health & Societies Scholar Program Alum Alexander Tsai and Harvard Pop Center affiliated faculty member Ichiro Kawachi indicates that middle-aged men who are well-integrated socially have more than a 2-fold reduced risk for suicide. Being married, having a larger social network, and attending religious services on a regular basis showed the strongest protective associations. This study was published online July 14 in the Annals of Internal Medicine and received some press on dailyRx.
In support of a recent study on job loss and depression in the USA and Europe published in the International Journal of Epidemiology and reported by CBS News, Harvard Pop Center Director Lisa Berkman has written a commentary. The HSPH researchers and their colleagues found that older American workers (aged 50-64) are more likely to experience depression after job loss than their European counterparts. In Berkman’s commentary, The hidden and not so hidden benefits of work: identity, income and interaction, she discusses three kinds of loss that may be central to affecting health and well-being.
Harvard Pop Center faculty member, Cindy Liu, looks at the association of prenatal life stressors with post-partum depression diagnoses in this study in Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology.
Arijit Nandi and Elizabeth Sweet, former RWJF Health & Society Scholars, find debt to be an important socioeconomic determinant of health in their recent study, “The high price of debt: Household financial debt and its impact on mental and physical health” published in the journal Social Science and Medicine.
Mark Schuster, Pop Center faculty member, finds a strong association between perceived discrimination and racial/ethnic disparities in problem behaviors among pre-adolescent youths.