Released: December, 2008
Summary: This is the conclusion of powerful new tipping-point research released today by the Wellesley Institute and the Community Social Planning Council of Toronto.
Poverty is making Canadians sick, robbing hundreds of thousands of their health and leading to widespread preventable illness and creating huge costs for the health care system. For the first time, the study uses Canadian Community Health Survey and income files to paint the most comprehensive picture to date of our nation’s health.
“High income does not guarantee good health, but low income almost inevitably ensures poor health and significant health inequity in Canada,” reports Dr. Ernie Lightman, lead researcher for the new study. Poverty is triggering a devastating health crisis among lower-income people, but the research shows that raising incomes leads to better health.
“This important new research establishes in the most complete way the strong link between low income and poor health,” says Rick Blickstead, CEO of the Wellesley Institute, which co-sponsored the study.” Prof. Lightman and his colleagues have demonstrated that health equity is truly an issue of national significance. The results confirm for the first time that relatively small increases in incomes of poor Canadians will lead to substantial increases in their health.”