In the past semester, students collected data with an extended version of our vignette study within the context of a project seminar entitled “Only difficult or ill? A project seminar on the medicalization of child behavior?”. The data were collected with 625 students and employees of the university of Siegen. The respondents have similar attitudes as the sample of our representative study from last year. About 60% of the respondents believe that children who do not completely fit the norm receive immediately a diagnosis (representative sample: 54%). Moreover, 90% disapprove with starting with medication therapy in the case of children with behavioral problems.
Also this year, the MEPYSO team was represented at the Forum of Interdisciplinary Social Policy Research (FIS) of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs in Berlin. Current work of FIS-funded scientists was presented there under the motto “Dialogue, Strategy and Networking”. Dr. Nadine Reibling, Mareike Ariaans, Stephan Krayter and Philipp Linden presented current results from the MEPYSO project and gave a lecture on “The role of medicine and psychology in the German welfare state”.
From September 5th to 7th 2019 the MEPYSO project participated at the ESPANET conference in Stockholm and presented two current research articles:
Philipp Linden & Nadine Reibling: Medicalization as alternative path through welfare? Determinants of the transition from unemployment to a medical leave status in the German social policy system.
Stephan Krayter & Nadine Reibling: Has poverty been increasingly medicalized? An empirical study of the scientific poverty discourse
As part of the special feature Public Health in Europe a paper by Nadine Reibling was published on the question how the welfare state affects, to what extent doctors and medication are used to deal with social problems. The paper shows that social and health policy are crucial for medicalization processes, e.g. pharmaceutical regulation is responsible for the much lower consumption of psychotropic drugs in Europe compared to the liberal US. In contrast, the welfare state can also contribute to medicalization, e.g. through activation policies that foster sick leave and self-perceived disabilities for persons on minimum income benefits.
Reibling, N. (2019): Engine and Brakes: European Welfare States and the Medicalization of Social Problems. Europe Now, https://www.europenowjournal.org/2019/06/10/engine-and-brakes-european-welfare-states-and-the-medicalization-of-social-problems/.
The first project publication is online!
- What role does stigmatization, triggered by a status of unemployment, play in the lives of affected persons?
- How widespread and stressful is such a stigmatization?
- And does the perceived stigmatisation change as a result of medicalisation, e.g. when those affected are exempted from the compulsory job search/recording due to health restrictions?
Answers from a study with quantitative data are now available under: