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Mental health recovery and economic recovery after the tsunami: High-frequency longitudinal evidence from Sri Lankan small business owners

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Author Info

  • de Mel, Suresh
  • McKenzie, David
  • Woodruff, Christopher

Abstract

A sample of 561 Sri Lanka microenterprise owners affected to various extents by the December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami were surveyed five times at quarterly intervals between March 2005 and April 2006. Mental health recovery was measured through questions on return to normalcy and change in life outlook. Business profits were used to measure livelihoods recovery. We find that these mental health process measures are correlated with post-traumatic stress disorder and general mental health in a validation survey, and display similar correlates to both in the cross-section. However, socioeconomic factors are not found to be significant in predicting the dynamics of mental health recovery in a fixed effects logistic regression. Mental health recovery from a given initial level therefore appears to depend largely on time since the disaster, and not on economic recovery of an individual's livelihood.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.

Volume (Year): 66 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (February)
Pages: 582-595

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Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:66:y:2008:i:3:p:582-595

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Related research

Keywords: Sri Lanka Tsunami Livelihood recovery Mental health recovery Return to normalcy Fixed effects;

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Cited by:
  1. Jishnu Das & Quy-Toan Do & Jed Friedman & David McKenzie, 2008. "Mental Health Patterns and Consequences: Results from Survey Data in Five Developing Countries," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 23(1), pages 31-55, August.
  2. Baez, Javier E. & de la Fuente, Alejandro & Santos, Indhira, 2010. "Do Natural Disasters Affect Human Capital? An Assessment Based on Existing Empirical Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 5164, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. de Mel, Suresh & McKenzie, David J. & Woodruff, Christopher, 2009. "Measuring microenterprise profits: Must we ask how the sausage is made?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 19-31, January.

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