National research on income and wealth in Australia has confirmed AMA observations that there is a clear connection between unemployment and health.
The AMP.NATSEMreport, Healthy, wealthy and wise?
shows that less than one third of working-age Australians in ill-health are employed full-time.
The report also shows a direct relationship between poor health and earning potential.
The findings strengthen AMA calls for increased investment in health.
AMA President, Dr Andrew Pesce, renewed calls for governments to invest in health as a national priority.
"At budget time the AMA highlighted the impact unemployment has on health -underlining the debilitating stress and emotional impacts experienced by individuals and communities in tough economic times. This research shows the other side of that coin - that ill-health prevents people from contributing to the economy," Dr Pesce said.
"This is further proof that investing in health not only contributes to longer, happier and healthier lives, but that investment has a direct and lasting impact on the productivity of the workforce.
"The report's finding, that the financial consequences of ill-health are 'clearly great', comes as no surprise to the medical profession. We have been urging Government to include health in stimulus investment, but to no avail.
"Hopefully this further evidence will convince governments that there is no better investment than health."