Money Does Not Bring Well-Being, but It Does Help! The Relationship between Financial Resources and Life Satisfaction of the Chronically Ill Mediated by Social Deprivation and Loneliness

Mieke Rijken, Peter P. Groenewegen

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Chronically ill people have lower incomes and higher illness-related costs than the general population. Therefore, their financial situation can be considered vulnerable, like their health. The aims of this study were (1) to assess the strength of the relationship between financial resources and life satisfaction of patients with chronic physical illness and (2) to investigate the mediating roles of social deprivation and loneliness in this relationship. Data were used of 1265 patients diagnosed with one or more somatic chronic disease(s), aged 25 years and older, who were recruited from 56 general practices in The Netherlands. GPs provided data on diagnoses and illness duration; chronically ill patients provided data on their functional status, financial situation, social deprivation, loneliness and life satisfaction. Data were analysed by means of correlation and linear regression analyses as well as LISREL path analysis. Available income correlates 0.13 with life satisfaction, which is similar to correlations found in generalWestern populations. The effect of available income on life satisfaction is mainly an indirect effect that can be explained by the mediating roles of social deprivation and loneliness. Policy should pay specific attention to income support of the chronically ill and disabled in order to improve their opportunities for social participation and increase the quality
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39
Number of pages1
JournalJournal of Community & Applied Social Psychology
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • loneliness
  • chronic physical illness
  • social deprivation
  • life satisfaction
  • income

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