In this piece for the Yale School of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry blog, Lucile Bruce highlights the work of Associate Research Scientist Dr. Annie Harper, whose research seeks to determine the impact of poverty on those diagnosed with serious mental illness.
“‘Some of the things we think of as ‘mental health problems’ are actually poverty problems,’ she explains. ‘If we solved people’s financial problems, I think many of their other problems would go away.’
It’s a radical thesis, one that Harper is uniquely equipped to test. An anthropologist by training (she earned her PhD from Yale in 2010), Harper spent many years working in international microfinance and has a Masters in Political Economy of Development. An Associate Research Scientist at the Yale Program for Recovery & Community Health in the Yale Department of Psychiatry, she studies ‘financial health’— the point of intersection between people with serious mental illness and their money.”