2012-02-01 12:00 - Messages

Role of psychological empowerment in the reduction of burnout in Canadian healthcare workers

In this study, we investigated the role of psychological empowerment as a protective factor for burnout among workers exposed to work-related stressors (e.g. daily hassles, overload, job changes). A cross-sectional questionnaire study was conducted, with a convenience sample of 401 healthcare workers. Hierarchical multiple regressions were performed to test main and moderating effects of empowerment cognitions. Results revealed partial support for the hypotheses. Only the job meaningfulness cognition exerts a beneficent main effect on all burnout symptoms beyond the effect of stressors. Some moderating effects differing according to burnout dimensions were also found. Most interestingly, high levels of empowerment cognitions accentuate the effect of change-related resources in the reduction of emotional exhaustion. Because psychological empowerment has beneficial effects, organizations could rely on different strategies to enhance it.

Source : Boudrias, J.-S., Morin, A. J. S. and Brodeur, M.-M. (2012), Role of psychological empowerment in the reduction of burnout in Canadian healthcare workers. Nursing & Health Sciences, 14: 8–17.

RoadSafetyAtWork.ca provides tools to improve safety for B.C.’s working drivers

WorkSafeBC has launched a new online safe driving website in partnership with the BCAA Road Safety Foundation. RoadSafetyAtWork.ca is aimed at employers whose workers are required to drive in the course of their work.

Source : http://www.worksafebc.com/news_room/news_releases/2012/new_12_02_17.asp

The Association Between Workers' Employability and Burnout in a Reorganization Context

Longitudinal Evidence Building Upon the Conservation of Resources Theory
This longitudinal study probes the relationship between employability and burnout among employees from a company undergoing reorganization. We advanced employability as a personal resource that relates negatively to burnout. We expected that this hypothesis would hold for different operationalizations of employability, including (1) job-related and (2) transferable skills, (3) willingness to change jobs and (4) to develop competences, (5) opportunity awareness, (6) self-esteem, and (7) self-perceived employability (i.e., perceived employment opportunities). In a similar vein, we expected that the hypothesis would hold for the different dimensions of burnout; namely emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and reduced personal accomplishment. We used longitudinal Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) to test our hypotheses. Employees from a Swiss company undergoing a major reorganization were surveyed at three times with a total time lag of 19 months (Time 1: N = 287; Time 2: N = 128; Time 3: N = 107). Our results indicate that particularly self-esteem, but also job-related and transferable skills as indicators of one's employability were important predictors of burnout, with all relationships being negative.

Source : De Cuyper, Nele;Raeder, Sabine;Van der Heijden, Beatrice I. J. M.;Wittekind, Anette. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, Feb 20 , 2012.

Effective and Viable Mind-Body Stress Reduction in the Workplace

A Randomized Controlled Trial
Highly stressed employees are subject to greater health risks, increased cost, and productivity losses than those with normal stress levels. To address this issue in an evidence-based manner, worksite stress management programs must be able to engage individuals as well as capture data on stress, health indices, work productivity, and health care costs. In this randomized controlled pilot, our primary objective was to evaluate the viability and proof of concept for two mind-body workplace stress reduction programs (one therapeutic yoga-based and the other mindfulness-based), in order to set the stage for larger cost-effectiveness trials. A second objective was to evaluate 2 delivery venues of the mindfulness-based intervention (online vs. in-person). Intention-to-treat principles and 2 (pre and post) × 3 (group) repeated-measures analysis of covariance procedures examined group differences over time on perceived stress and secondary measures to clarify which variables to include in future studies: sleep quality, mood, pain levels, work productivity, mindfulness, blood pressure, breathing rate, and heart rate variability (a measure of autonomic balance). Two hundred and thirty-nine employee volunteers were randomized into a therapeutic yoga worksite stress reduction program, 1 of 2 mindfulness-based programs, or a control group that participated only in assessment. Compared with the control group, the mind-body interventions showed significantly greater improvements on perceived stress, sleep quality, and the heart rhythm coherence ratio of heart rate variability. The two delivery venues for the mindfulness program produced basically equivalent results. Both the mindfulness-based and therapeutic yoga programs may provide viable and effective interventions to target high stress levels, sleep quality, and autonomic balance in employees.

Source : Wolever, Ruth Q.;Bobinet, Kyra J.;McCabe, Kelley;Mackenzie, Elizabeth R.;Fekete, Erin;Kusnick, Catherine A.;Baime, Michael. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, Feb 20 , 2012.

The association between study characteristics and outcome in the relation between job stress and cardiovascular disease

A multilevel meta-regression analysis
Objectives Studies about job strain and cardiovascular disease (CVD) have yielded inconsistent results, which hinders making a firm conclusion about the association. Inconsistent findings may be the result of methodological differences. If the relative CVD risk is influenced by methodological differences, these differences should be explored in more detail in future research to clarify which methodological characteristics are inherent to obtain the most accurate estimate between job strain and CVD risk. By assessing how study characteristics are associated with the outcome, we take the first step in unraveling this association. In this review, we explore the following research question: are study characteristics associated with the size of the reported relative CVD risk?
Methods A systematic literature search yielded 71 studies about job stress, assessed with the demand–control model, and CVD. Traditional meta-regression was extended enabling the use of correlated data to quantify heterogeneity within and between studies.
Results Compared to studies that use the original Job Content Questionnaire (JCQ), studies in which a more deviant form of the JCQ was used yielded, on average, 43% higher estimates. Studies conducted in the USA yielded about 26% lower estimates compared to studies conducted in Scandinavian countries.
Conclusions Several study characteristics are associated with the size of the reported relative CVD risk. Many of these study features are related to the validity of the exposure and outcome assessment and are inherent to obtain an accurate estimate between work stress and CVD risk. More research is needed to clarify why these study features impact the average relative CVD risk.

Source : Szerencsi K, van Amelsvoort LGPM, Viechtbauer W, Mohren DCL, Prins MH, Kant I. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2012.

Work at night and breast cancer

Report on evidence-based options for preventive actions
In 2007, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classified shift work involving circadian disruption as probably carcinogenic to humans (group 2A), primarily based on experimental and epidemiologic evidence for breast cancer. In order to examine options for evidence-based preventive actions, 16 researchers in basic, epidemiological and applied sciences convened at a workshop in Copenhagen 26–27 October 2011. This paper summarizes the evidence from epidemiological and experimental studies and presents possible recommendations for prevention of the effects of night work on breast cancer.
Among those studies that quantified duration of shift work, there were statistically significant elevations in risk only after about 20 years working night shift. It is unclear from these studies whether or not there is a modest but real elevated risk for shorter durations. Hence, restriction of the total number of years working night shift could be one future preventive recommendation for shift workers. The diurnal secretion of melatonin by the pineal gland with peak in secretory activity during the night is a good biochemical marker of the circadian rhythm. Disruption of the diurnal melatonin secretion pattern can be diminished by restricting the number of consecutive night shifts. Reddish light and reduced light intensity during work at night could potentially help diminish the inhibitory activity of light with strong intensity on the melatonin secretion, but further mechanistic insight is needed before definite recommendations can be made. Earlier or more intensive mammography screening among female night shift worker is not recommended because the harm–benefit ratio in this age group may not be beneficial. Preventive effects of melatonin supplementation on breast cancer risk have not been clearly documented, but may be a promising avenue if a lack of side effects can be shown even after long-term ingestion. Women with previous or current breast cancer should be advised not to work night shifts because of strong experimental evidence demonstrating accelerated tumor growth by suppression of melatonin secretion.
Work during the night is widespread worldwide. To provide additional evidence-based recommendations on prevention of diseases related to night shift work, large studies on the impact of various shift schedules and type of light on circadian rhythms need to be conducted in real work environments

Source : Bonde JP, Hansen J, Kolstad HA, Mikkelsen S, Olsen JH, Blask DE, Härmä M, Kjuus H, de Koning HJ, Olsen J, Møller M, Schernhammer ES, Stevens RG, Åkerstedt T. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2012.

ACOEM Releases Guidance on Managing Workplace Fatigue

A workplace in which hazards are well-controlled, with an active culture of health and a supportive work environment, can enhance worker health and well-being, both on and off the job.
Implementing a comprehensive fatigue risk management system could improve workplace safety and efficiency, according to a new guidance paper released by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
Safety and productivity in the workplace are directly related to worker health, reports the paper, titled, “Fatigue Risk Management in the Workplace.” A workplace may have chemical, physical, biological, and/or psychosocial hazards that have the potential to impact physical and psychological well-being.

Source : http://ohsonline.com/articles/2012/02/20/acoem-releases-guidance-on-managing-workplace-fatigue.aspx

Public violence, staff harassment and the wellbeing of nursing staff

An analysis of national survey data
Instances of physical violence from members of the public and non-physical harassment from colleagues are highly prevalent in the health-care workforce and can be damaging to both staff and patients. While policy has tended to focus on the more visible problem of public violence, little is known about which of the two behaviours is the most damaging. This study compared the consequences of public violence and staff harassment for wellbeing in two large samples of English nurses. The results revealed that while both types of aggression were related to decreased levels of staff wellbeing, staff harassment had a stronger negative association with wellbeing than public violence. The relationships between each of the types of aggression and some aspects of wellbeing were moderated by perceived supervisory support, such that the negative effects on wellbeing were greater for those with higher levels of support. The major implication of this study is that health-care organizations must pay more attention to the prevention of staff harassment in the workplace.

Source : Chris Woodrow and David E Guest. Health Serv Manage Res. February 2012, vol. 25, no. 1, p. 24-30.

Pupils with special educational needs in basic education schools and teachers’ sickness absences

A register-linkage study
Objectives : We examined whether having a high percentage of pupils with special educational needs (SEN) in basic education schools increases the risk of sickness absence among teachers and whether this risk is dependent on the pupil–teacher ratio (PTR), an indicator of teacher resources at school.
Methods : We obtained register data on 8089 teachers working in 404 schools in 10 municipalities in Finland during the school year 2004–2005. We used multilevel multinomial regression models to examine the risk of teachers' short- and long-term sickness absence in relation to the percentage of SEN pupils and the PTR at school. We tested the equality of trends in groups with high and low PTR using PTR × SEN interaction term.
Results After adjustment for teacher and school characteristics, the risk for long-term absences was higher among teachers at schools with a high percentage of SEN pupils than among teachers at schools with a low percentage of SEN pupils [odds ratio (OR) 1.5, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.2–1.8). This was also the case for short-term absences (OR 1.4, 95% CI 1.2–1.7). In analyses stratified by the PTR levels, the association between the percentage of SEN pupils and long-term absences was 15% higher among teachers with a high PTR than among those with a low PTR (P for interaction=0.10).
Conclusions : Teachers' sickness absenteeism seems to increase with a higher percentage of SEN pupils, especially when the PTR is high. Teacher resources at schools that have a high percentage of SEN pupils should be well maintained to ensure the health of teachers.

Source : Scand J Work Environ Health. 2012. doi:10.5271/sjweh.3281

Workforce ageing

Contenu du dossier paru dans Work Employment & Society February 2012 vol. 26 no. 1 :

Performing Artists, Part 2

Work: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment and Rehabilitation. Volume 41, Number 1 / 2012

Performing arts health (PAH) as a field of research may be relatively unknown to some readers. It is my intent in this second editorial, therefore, to highlight some of the similarities and differences between this field and the field of work disability (WD), broadly construed (as in this journal) to include prevention, assessment and rehabilitation.
Readers will be familiar with the significant economic and societal burden of work-related health concerns. In 1999, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that occupational injury and disease globally accounted for 800,000 deaths and 38 million disability adjusted life years (DALYs) [1]. Closer to my home,
in Canada, the total direct and indirect costs of occupational injuries to the Canadian economy was estimated at $19 billion in 2008, or $567 per Canadian. These data include only costs associated with claims that were processed. We know, of course, that many injuries and illnesses are not claimed, and in a socialized system of healthcare, those costs are considerable.

Source : http://iospress.metapress.com/content/w26287835557/

La qualité de l’emploi des travailleurs plus âgés au Québec

Regard sur l'évolution de la situation des femmes et des hommes
Cette étude traite de l'évolution de la qualité de l'emploi des travailleurs plus âgés, soit ceux de 50 à 64 ans. Elle comprend quatre sections. La première traite de l'importance d'étudier la qualité de l'emploi des travailleurs plus âgés. La deuxième section aborde le sujet des changements dans la participation des travailleurs plus âgés au cours de la période 1997-2010, pour laquelle nous disposons de données sur la qualité de l'emploi. En troisième lieu, nous exposons succinctement la mesure de la qualité de l'emploi utilisée, pour ensuite, dans la quatrième section, présenter une analyse des résultats. En tenant compte de la qualité des données, les résultats sont ventilés selon le sous-groupe d'âge, le niveau d'études, la durée de l'emploi, le secteur d'appartenance, la couverture syndicale et la taille de l'établissement.

Source : http://www.stat.gouv.qc.ca/publications/remuneration/travailleur_age.htm

Occupational injury and work organization among immigrant Latino residential construction workers

BACKGROUND: Rates of occupational injury among immigrant workers are widely believed to be underestimated. The goal of this study was to enhance understanding of the burden of occupational injury and the work organization factors underlying injury among immigrant Latino residential construction workers. METHODS: Prospective data were obtained from a community-based sample of Latino residential construction workers (N = 107) over a 3-month period. RESULTS: Twenty-eight participants were injured, resulting in an injury incidence rate of 55.0/100 FTE (95% CI = 41.4-71.6) during the 3-month observation period. The injury rate involving days away from work during the observation period was 3.9/100 FTE (CI = 0.2-7.2). Injuries were elevated among roofers relative to framers and general construction workers. Roofers had elevated exposure to a variety of deleterious work organization factors. CONCLUSIONS: Although imprecise given the small sample, our results suggest a threefold to fourfold underestimate of the injury burden to immigrant Latino construction workers. Work organization may contribute to elevated rates of non-fatal occupational injury, particularly among roofers.

Source : Joseph G. Grzywacz PhD, Sara A. Quandt PhD, Antonio Marín MA, Phillip Summers MPH, Wei Lang PhD, Thomas Mills MS, Carlos Evia PhD, Julia Rushing MS, Katherine Donadio MS, Thomas A. Arcury PhD. American Journal of Industrial Medicine. 2012.

Bullying at work and onset of a major depressive episode among Danish female eldercare workers

Objective The aim of this study was to analyze whether exposure to workplace bullying among 5701 female employees in the Danish eldercare sector increases the risk of onset of a major depressive episode (MDE).
Methods Participants received questionnaires in 2004–2005 and again in 2006–2007. MDE was assessed with the Major Depression Inventory. We examined baseline bullying as a predictor of onset of MDE at follow-up using multiple logistic regression. We further conducted a cross-sectional analysis at the time of follow-up among participants who at baseline were free of bullying, MDE, and signs of reduced psychological health. Finally, we analyzed reciprocal effects, by using baseline bullying and baseline MDE as predictors for bullying and MDE at follow-up.
Results Onset rates of MDE in the groups of no, occasional, and frequent bullying were 1.5%, 3.4%, and 11.3%, respectively. Odds ratios (OR) for onset of MDE were 2.22 [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.31–3.76] for occasional bullying and OR 8.45 (95% CI 4.04–17.70) for frequent bullying, after adjustment for covariates. In the cross-sectional analysis, OR were 6.29 (95% CI 2.52–15.68) for occasional bullying and 20.96 (95% CI 5.80–75.80) for frequent bullying. In the analyses on reciprocal effects, both baseline bullying [occasional: OR 2.12 (95% CI 1.29–3.48) and frequent: OR 6.39 (95% CI 3.10–13.17)] and baseline MDE [OR 7.18 (95% CI 3.60–14.30] predicted MDE at follow-up. However, only baseline bullying [occasional: OR 7.44 (95% CI 5.94–9.31) and frequent: OR 11.91 (95% CI 7.56–18.77)] but not baseline MDE [OR 0.93 (95% CI 0.47–1.84)] predicted bullying at follow-up.
Conclusions Workplace bullying increased the risk of MDE among female eldercare workers. MDE did not predict risk of bullying. Eliminating bullying at work may be an important contribution to the prevention of MDE.

Source : Rugulies R, Madsen IEH, Hjarsbech PU, Hogh A, Borg V, Carneiro IG, Aust B. Scand J Work Environ Health. 2012.

Study finds that working shifts may increase the risk of developing diabetes in nurses

Examining the association between rotating shift work (≥3 nights/month plus days and evenings) and Type 2 diabetes among 177,000 female nurses aged 25–67 (the Nurses' Health Study), this large-scale study revealed a graded association between the duration of working life the nurses had been engaged in shift work and risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes.
Compared with women who reported no shift work, participants with 1–2 years of shift work had a 5% excess risk of T2D, rising to 20% after 3–9 years, 40% after 10–19 years, and almost 60% for ≥20 years. These data, which were based on a long follow-up, are in agreement with previous smaller-scale studies. The studies conclude that additional efforts to prevent diabetes among shift workers through promotion of healthy lifestyles, weight control, and early identification and treatment of prediabetic and diabetic employees are needed, and modifications to shift work itself. Rotating shift work comprises a range of alternative schedule patterns, such as backward- and forward-rotating shift systems, and the proportion of night and early morning shifts varies, future studies should address these variations and identify patterns that minimize the risk.

Source : http://osha.europa.eu/en/news/us-study-finds-that-working-shifts-may-increase-the-risk-of-developing-diabetes-in-nurses

Overtime Work as a Predictor of Major Depressive Episode

A 5-Year Follow-Up of the Whitehall II Study
The association between overtime work and depression is still unclear. This study examined the association between overtime work and the onset of a major depressive episode (MDE).
Methodology/Principal Findings
Prospective cohort study with a baseline examination of working hours, psychological morbidity (an indicator of baseline depression) and depression risk factors in 1991–1993 and a follow-up of major depressive episode in 1997–1999 (mean follow-up 5.8 years) among British civil servants (the Whitehall II study; 1626 men, 497 women, mean age 47 years at baseline). Onset of 12-month MDE was assessed by the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) at follow-up. In prospective analysis of participants with no psychological morbidity at baseline, the odds ratio for a subsequent major depressive episode was 2.43 (95% confidence interval 1.11 to 5.30) times higher for those working 11+ hours a day compared to employees working 7–8 hours a day, when adjusted for socio-demographic factors at baseline. Further adjustment for chronic physical disease, smoking, alcohol use, job strain and work-related social support had little effect on this association (odds ratio 2.52; 95% confidence interval 1.12 to 5.65).
Data from middle-aged civil servants suggest that working long hours of overtime may predispose to major depressive episodes.

Source : Virtanen M, Stansfeld SA, Fuhrer R, Ferrie JE, Kivimäki M (2012) Overtime Work as a Predictor of Major Depressive Episode: A 5-Year Follow-Up of the Whitehall II Study. PLoS ONE 7(1).

Mal-être au travail ?

D'après le nouveau rapport de l'OCDE, les troubles mentaux représentent un problème croissant dans la société, affectant de plus en plus la productivité et le bien-être des personnes au travail.
Mal-être au travail ? Mythes et réalités sur la santé mentale et l'emploi, révèle qu'un travailleur sur cinq souffre de troubles mentaux, comme la dépression ou l'anxiété, et que bon nombre d'entre eux peinent à s'en sortir.
Le rapport bat en brèche plusieurs idées fausses concernant la question de la santé mentale, et estime en conclusion que les pouvoirs publics doivent s'efforcer de trouver des solutions nouvelles. La plupart des personnes souffrant d'un trouble mental travaillent : leurs taux d'emploi oscillent entre 55 et 70 %, soit 10 à 15 points de pourcentage de moins que ceux des personnes en bonne santé.

Note de synthèse : http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/7/4/49540729.pdf
Chapitre 6  "Résumé et conclusions"  : http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/19/2/49230890.pdf

Working time in the EU

The number of hours worked per week continues to drift downwards, on average – the result of more people working part time, fewer people working long hours, and a fall in the collectively agreed working hours in many countries. Foundation Findings provide pertinent background information and policy pointers for all actors and interested parties engaged in the current European debate on the future of social policy. The contents are based on Foundation research and reflect its autonomous and tripartite structure.

Source : http://www.eurofound.europa.eu/publications/htmlfiles/ef1145.htm

With long hours of work, might depression then lurk?

Objective The aim of this study was to examine depression as a potential health effect of long work hours, anticipating an exposure–response relationship.
Method A nationwide prospective cohort study of 2790 Danish senior medical consultants was conducted (61.7% response rate). With the consent of the Danish Data Protection Agency, data from a questionnaire survey was linked with data from the Medical Products Agency. Long work hours were defined based on a self-reported average of weekly work hours >40, while redemption of anti-depressive (AD) drug prescriptions defined depression. Proportional hazards Cox regression analyses were conducted adjusting for gender, age, marital status, medical specialty, decision authority at work, work social support, quantitative work demands, and AD drugs prescribed before baseline.
Results Long weekly work hours did not increase the risk of redeeming AD drug prescriptions at all times during follow-up compared to the reference of 37–40 work hours [41–44 hours: HR 0.95, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 0.5–1.8; 45–49 hours: HR 0.88, 95% CI 0.4–1.8; 50–54 hours: HR 0.83, 95% CI 0.3–2.1; 55–59 hours: HR 0.67, 95% CI 0.2–2.9; ≥60 hours: HR 0.48, 95% CI 0.1–3.7]. The same result emerged when work hours was applied in a continuous form (from 25–36 hours to 37–40 hours to 41–44 hours and so on) (HR 0.93, 95% CI 0.76–1.13).
Conclusions This study does not support the anticipation that long work hours increase the risk of depression. If anything, long work hours vaguely appeared to decrease the risk of redeeming AD drug prescriptions.

Source : http://www.sjweh.fi/show_abstract.php?abstract_id=3268

Risque suicidaire et activité professionnelle

Introduction – L'objectif de cette étude est de décrire le risque suicidaire selon l'emploi. Elle s'appuie sur les données de la phase pilote en région Rhône-Alpes du programme de surveillance de la santé mentale selon l'activité professionnelle « Samotrace », développé à l'Institut de veille sanitaire (InVS).
Matériel et méthodes – L'échantillon a été constitué par tirage au sort aléatoire au sein d'une population de salariés, surveillée par un réseau d'environ 80 médecins du travail, entre janvier 2006 et mars 2008. Le risque suicidaire a été exploré par le questionnaire diagnostique Mini, administré par le médecin du travail. L'emploi était décrit par la profession et le secteur d'activité. Le risque suicidaire est ici décrit selon le sexe, l'âge, la catégorie sociale et le secteur d'activité.
Résultats – Le risque suicidaire concerne près de 10% des femmes et 7% des hommes. Chez les hommes, ce risque suit un gradient social, les catégories sociales les plus favorisées étant les moins concernées. Bien que les résultats ne soient pas significatifs, le secteur de la santé et de l'action sociale et celui des transports et communications pourraient être plus particulièrement concernés. Chez les femmes, le risque suicidaire selon l'emploi est moins contrasté.
Conclusion – L'identification de populations vulnérables, en particulier avec un risque suicidaire élevé, devrait aboutir à la mise en place d'actions de prévention spécifique.

Source : BEH - Bulletin épidémiologique hebdomadaire, 47-48, 13 décembre 2011, p. 501-504.

Femmes et maladies professionnelles

Le cas de la Belgique
L'indemnisation des maladies professionnelles joue un rôle important. Au niveau individuel, elle constitue une intervention de la sécurité sociale qui garantit un certain niveau de revenus aux victimes de ces maladies. Au niveau collectif, elle donne une visibilité particulière à certains problèmes de santé au travail et, par là même, elle contribue à sensibiliser les différents acteurs des politiques de prévention.
En Belgique, comme dans la plupart des pays industrialisés, ce système d'indemnisation a été mis en place par étapes successives. La première législation remonte à 1927. Bien que le système ait évolué de façon considérable en un peu plus de 80 ans, aucune analyse d'ensemble n'a jamais été effectuée en ce qui concerne la situation respective des femmes et des hommes.
Le présent rapport est issu d'une coopération entre le Conseil de l'égalité des chances entre hommes et femmes en Belgique et l'Institut syndical européen. Il présente un premier état des lieux basé principalement sur les statistiques du Fonds des maladies professionnelles et les résultats d'enquêtes sur les conditions de travail en Belgique ou, lorsque les données manquaient, dans des pays voisins.

Source : http://hesa.etui-rehs.org/fr/files/ETUI_rapport_122.pdf

The relationship between current and former shift work and the metabolic syndrome

Objective The occurrence of possible health hazards among former shift workers is not well-known. We studied associations of former and current shift work with the metabolic syndrome (MetS).
Methods Participants were 1811 full-time employees of a large airline company (1009 men). Working times were categorized into five groups: day worker [N=297 (the reference group)], former shift worker (N=341), 2-shift worker (N=418), night-shift worker (N=283), and in-flight worker (N=472). MetS was measured by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) criteria and the National Institute of Health Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP) guideline. The prevalence of the syndrome in the study population was 28.5% and 20.8%, respectively.
Results Among male former shift workers, MetS was more prevalent compared to male day workers [IDF: age-adjusted odds ratio (OR) 2.13, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.35–3.37; NCEP: OR 1.83, 95% CI 1.13–2.96]. Associations did not change after additional adjustments for education, smoking, physical activity, alcohol consumption, and insomnia symptoms (IDF: OR 2.00, 95% CI 1.26–3.19; NCEP: 1.67, 95% CI 1.02–2.72). Male 2-shift workers also had an elevated risk of IDF-defined MetS (OR 1.64, 95% CI 1.06–2.55) but the association weakened in the fully adjusted analyses (OR 1.48, 95% CI 0.93–2.24). Prevalence of the MetS was marginally significantly higher among night-shift work (IDF: OR 1.51, 95% CI 0.95–2.34) and was attenuated further with additional adjustments (OR 1.37, 95% CI 0.84–2.22). Among women, no significant differences in prevalence of the MetS between day work and shift work were observed.
Conclusion Findings of the cross-sectional study suggest that MetS diagnosed by standardized criteria is more prevalent among former male shift workers than current day workers who have never worked in shifts.

Source : http://www.sjweh.fi/show_abstract.php?abstract_id=3267

A systematic review of the effectiveness of occupational health and safety training

Objectives Training is regarded as an important component of occupational health and safety (OHS) programs. This paper primarily addresses whether OHS training has a beneficial effect on workers. The paper also examines whether higher engagement OHS training has a greater effect than lower engagement training.
Methods Ten bibliographic databases were searched for pre-post randomized trial studies published in journals between 1996 and November 2007. Training interventions were included if they were delivered to workers and were concerned with primary prevention of occupational illness or injury. The methodological quality of each relevant study was assessed and data was extracted. The impacts of OHS training in each study were summarized by calculating the standardized mean differences. The strength of the evidence on training's effectiveness was assessed for (i) knowledge, (ii) attitudes and beliefs, (iIi) behaviors, and (iv) health using the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Guide to Community Preventive Services, a qualitative evidence synthesis method.
Results Twenty-two studies met the relevance criteria of the review. They involved a variety of study populations, occupational hazards, and types of training. Strong evidence was found for the effectiveness of training on worker OHS behaviors, but insufficient evidence was found of its effectiveness on health (ie, symptoms, injuries, illnesses).
Conclusions The review team recommends that workplaces continue to deliver OHS training to employees because training positively affects worker practices. However, large impacts of training on health cannot be expected, based on research evidence.

Source : http://www.sjweh.fi/show_abstract.php?abstract_id=3259

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