Journal Article

Employment, Attitudes Toward Work, and Quality of Life Among People With Schizophrenia in Three Countries

Stefan Priebe, Richard Warner, Theodor Hubschmid and Isolde Eckle

in Schizophrenia Bulletin

Published on behalf of Maryland Psychiatric Research Center

Volume 24, issue 3, pages 469-477
Published in print January 1998 | ISSN: 0586-7614
Published online January 1998 | e-ISSN: 1745-1701 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordjournals.schbul.a033341
Employment, Attitudes Toward Work, and Quality of Life Among People With Schizophrenia in Three Countries

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This study examines attitudes toward work, work incentives, and the impact of work on quality of life for people with schizophrenia, and investigates whether these findings differ among Western countries. We interviewed 24 randomly selected subjects with schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder (12 employed and 12 unemployed) at each of three sites: Boulder, Colorado, United States; Berlin, Germany; and Berne, Switzerland. No significant differences were found in the subjects' attitudes toward work or subjective well-being, although Swiss patients had a higher cost-of-living-adjusted income. Unemployed subjects reported a lower subjective reservation (minimum financially worthwhile) wage than employed subjects in Berlin and Berne, whereas the reverse was true in Boulder. When subjects from all sites were combined, employed patients displayed less psychopathology and significant advantages in terms of objective and subjective measures of income and well-being: They were also more likely to stress the importance of work. The results suggest that work is associated with a markedly better quality of life for people with schizophrenia, but that disability pension programs in the United States might introduce work disincentives.

Keywords: Quality of life; work; employment

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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