After a financial bailout earlier this year, fees in Portugal's health system have risen substantially. As a result, nongovernmental organizations say, the poor and elderly in Western Europe's poorest country can no longer afford essential care. Some Portuguese fear that austerity measures are threatening not only their livelihoods, but their lives.
Alfredo Silva, 67, showed up at an anti-austerity protest in Lisbon last month dressed as a skeleton. He says the costume shows the effect of Portugal's $100 billion bailout on retirees like him.
The human toll from the financial crisis in Greece now has a human face.
After 77-year-old retired pharmacist Dimitris Christoulas killed himself Wednesday outside the parliament building in Athens, a suicide note he left was reported to say that he felt he must take a "dignified end to my life" because austerity measures and "annihilated all traces for my survival," particularly his pension.
House prices have crashed. Banks and businesses have failed. Jobs have been axed. People are struggling to make the mortgage.
The Republic of Ireland's 4.6 million people have suffered considerably since the financial crisis began four years ago, forcing their government to turn to the European Union and International Monetary Fund for a $90 billion bail-out.