The study, published in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, also suggests that people who are reemployed quickly have better health outcomes than those who remain unemployed.
Study co-author Sarah Burgard, of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, says re-employment appears to be key for mitigating these health effects for people who lose their jobs -- either for health-related reasons or other reasons, say a layoff.
Burgard and co-authors James House of the University of Michigan and Jennie Brand of the University of California, Los Angeles, distinguished between health-related job losses and other involuntary job losses, such as layoffs, to reassess the effect of involuntary job loss on health.
Health insurance is often tied to full-time, long-term employment, but the most vulnerable workers in the new service economy have no access to employer-sponsored healthcare while they are employed, Burgard says.
After a job loss for health reasons, workers who have no health insurance have few resources to aid recovery or help with a new job search, Burgard says.