International Private Medical Insurance Magazine: Air Ambulance, Medical Assistance, Travel Assistance, Healthcare, Insurance, Expatriate Health Insurance, Patients Insurance, Travel Insurance, Private Medical Insurance, Health Insurance, Travel, Technology, News, 20/4/2012.
Expatriates who relocated abroad to a coastal destination might be less likely to claim for medical treatments on international travel insurance policies than those who moved to urban locations, a new study has indicated. The research, which was led by Dr Matthew White and Katherine Ashbullby from the European Centre for Environment and Human Health (ECEHH), as well as colleagues from the School of Psychology, University of Plymouth and Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry, involved the analysis of 2,750 English residents who responded to Natural England's two-year investigation into how individuals engage with the environment. Scientists examined the people who had visited coastal resorts, the countryside and urban parks. Every outdoor location was linked to pleasant emotional feelings, including refreshment, calmness and enjoyment.
Therefore, being in the open air was deemed to be good for the mental wellbeing of humans. However, travelling to urban parks was found to bring the fewest positive feelings, while the largest amount were realised by visits to the seaside. Furthermore, this correlation stayed even when researchers factored in issues such as the age of respondents, the activities engaged in, the distance of the journey taken and whether other individuals were present. The study was presented by ECEHH lecturer in health and risk Dr White today (April 19th) to the British Psychological Society Annual Conference, held in London's Grand Connaught Rooms.
He said: "There is a lot of work on the beneficial effects of visiting natural environments, but our findings suggest it is time to move beyond a simple 'urban vs rural' debate and start looking at the effect that different natural environments have on people's health and wellbeing." Colin Farelly, political studies professor in Canada's Queen's University, recently suggested that researchers spend more time looking into the causes of happiness, arguing this approach could result in "significant medical breakthroughs". He claimed the causes of disease might not be the most important medical issues to resolve nowadays.