Equal health at work? Protocol for an observational study of work organisation, workload and musculoskeletal complaints among women and men in grocery retail.
ABSTRACT: INTRODUCTION:Women generally report more work-related musculoskeletal complaints than men and have higher rates of sickness absence, even within occupations. One likely reason is that work tasks within the occupation are gendered, that is, women and men have different tasks, even when sharing the same job title. Retail is an appealing sector for studying working conditions and work environment in a gender context. The prevalence of work-related complaints is high, physical loads may differ considerably between tasks and the distribution of tasks is likely gendered. The overall aim of this study in retail is to examine factors at the organisational and individual level that may, in a gender perspective, explain working conditions, work tasks, workloads and musculoskeletal health. METHODS AND ANALYSES:Data will be collected in two grocery stores, each with 50-70 workers, at two occasions interspersed by about 1?year. In each of these four waves, data collection will include a web-based questionnaire to all workers addressing, for example, work tasks, psychosocial factors, fatigue and pain; semistructured interviews with managers and approximately 10 workers addressing, for example, competences and decision levels; and technical measurements of postures, movements and heart rate in about 30 workers. The study is novel in combining an organisational gender perspective addressed through qualitative methods with a quantitative analysis of tasks, workload and health. The design allows an examination of both how genders may differ, and why they may differ, as well as analyses of the extent to which gendered working conditions change over time in the two participating stores. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION:Approval of the study by the Swedish Ethical Review Authority (reference number 2017/404) has been obtained. This work will be disseminated by publication of peer-reviewed papers in scientific journals, presentations at scientific conferences and in meetings with representatives from Swedish retail, including unions and employers' organisations.
Project description:Despite 20 years of democracy, South Africa still suffers from profound health inequalities. Gender roles and norms are associated with individuals' vulnerability that lead to ill-health. For instance, gender inequality influences women's access to health care and women's agency to make health-related decisions. This paper explores gender-awareness and inclusivity in organisations that advocate for the right to health in South Africa, and analyses how this knowledge impacts their work?In total, 10 in-depth interviews were conducted with members of The Learning Network for Health and Human Rights (LN), a network of universities and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) which is explicitly committed to advancing the right to health, but not explicitly gendered in its orientation.The results show that there is a discrepancy in knowledge around gender and gendered power relations between LN members. This discrepancy in understanding gendered power relations suggests that gender is 'rendered invisible' within the LN, which impacts the way the LN advocates for the right to health.Even organizations that work on health rights of women might be unaware of the possibility of gender invisibility within their organisational structures.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Brazil is the world's second largest poultry meat producer and leading exporter. Many poultry processing tasks are physically demanding and involve factors that increase the risk of developing a work-related musculoskeletal disorder (WMSD). However, little is known about the assessment of bodily discomfort in these workers. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between perception of bodily discomfort and individual and work organisational factors in poultry slaughterhouse workers. DESIGN:Descriptive, cross-sectional study. SETTING:Three poultry slaughterhouses in the South of Brazil. PARTICIPANTS:This paper included 925 workers of 3 poultry slaughterhouses, 575 women and 350 men. The selection of the participants was random. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:Workers were asked about individual factors, work organiation, perception of bodily discomfort and cold, as well as ingestion of pain medication. Crude and adjusted ORs were estimated and 95% CIs were derived from binary logistic regression analysis for perception of bodily discomfort. RESULTS:There was a significant association (p<0.05) between perception of bodily discomfort and female gender (OR=1.77; 95% CI 1.30 to 2.41), performance of repetitive tasks (OR=1.81; 95% CI 1.12 to 2.91) and perception of cold (OR=2.05; 95% CI 1.44 to 2.91). CONCLUSIONS:The findings of this research demonstrated that the sector of occupational safety and health management in poultry slaughterhouses should monitor the symptoms of WMSD among their workers, especially female workers, workers who perform repetitive tasks, as well as those who perform tasks in cold environments because these groups are more likely to experience bodily discomfort.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:There is a need to evaluate whether, and to what degree, labour inspections or other regulatory tools have the desired effects on psychosocial, organisational and mechanical work environment, and employee health. The Norwegian Labour Inspection Authority (NLIA) uses different tools and strategies to enforce compliance with occupational safety and health (OSH) legislation. The aim of the present study is to evaluate the effects of labour inspections and other regulatory tools employed by the NLIA. The home-care service is one of the fastest growing occupations and a prioritised area for the NLIA, hence the present study will investigate regulatory tools in this sector. METHODS AND ANALYSIS:The research project has been designed as a longitudinal, cluster-randomised, controlled trial and will be conducted among Norwegian home-care workers. The objective of the research project is to evaluate the effects of the NLIA's regulatory tools (inspection and guidance) on: (1) compliance with OSH legislation and regulation; (2) psychosocial, organisational and mechanical work environment; (3) employee health in terms of musculoskeletal and mental health complaints; and (4) sickness absence. Public home-care services have been randomised to three intervention groups and one control group. Home-care services in the intervention groups will receive one of three intervention activities from the NLIA: (1) inspection from the Labour Inspection Authority; (2) guidance through an online interactive risk-assessment tool; and (3) guidance on psychosocial, organisational and mechanical work environment through workshops. The interventions will be performed at the organisational level (home-care service), and the effects of the interventions on the working environment and health complaints will be measured at the individual level (home-care employees). ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION:This project has been approved by the Regional Committees for Medical and Health Research Ethics (REC) in Norway (REC South East) (2018/2003/REK sør-øst C), the Norwegian Center for Research Data (566128), and will be conducted in accordance with the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki. The results will be reported in international peer-reviewed journals. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER:NCT03855163.
Project description:Job rotation has often been used in situations where the level of exposure cannot be reduced due to the characteristics of the job or through physical measures. However, the effectiveness of the job rotation strategy at preventing musculoskeletal complaints lacks adequate scientific data.A cluster randomized controlled trial will be used to investigate the effectiveness of job rotation to prevent musculoskeletal disorders in industrial workers. The randomized cluster was based in characteristics of production sectors. A total cluster will be 4 sectors, and 957 workers will be recruited from a textile industry and randomly allocated into intervention or control groups. Both groups will receive training on ergonomics guidelines. In addition, the intervention group will perform job rotation, switching between tasks with low, moderate, and high risk for musculoskeletal complaints. The primary outcome will be the number of working hours lost due to sick leave by musculoskeletal injuries recorded in employee administrative data bases. Secondary outcomes measured via survey include: body parts with musculoskeletal pain, the intensity of this pain, physical workload, fatigue, general health status, physical activity level, and work productivity. Secondary outcome measures will be assessed at baseline and after 3, 6, 9, and 12 months. The cost-effectiveness analysis will be performed from the societal and company perspective.Prevention of work-related musculoskeletal disorders is beneficial for workers, employers, and society. The results of this study will provide new information about the effectiveness of job rotation as a strategy to reduce work-related musculoskeletal disorders.NCT01979731, November 3, 2013.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:To offer an in-depth understanding of preventive behaviours, those complex behaviours considered as levers to foster work prevention, recent theoretical and empirical studies permitted to develop the model of preventive behaviours at work. The next step is to validate the model with researchers, professionals and workers. This article aims to describe the study protocol that will be used to validate the model of preventive behaviours at work. METHODS AND ANALYSIS:This Delphi Study proposes seven systematic steps to conduct a scientifically rigorous validation study based on scientific and professional experts' opinion. A focus group to collect workers' opinion about the model has also been included in the protocol. Thirty experts (researchers and professionals) will be selected regarding their experience (eg, at least 5?years of experience) and expertise (eg, having published at least one article as the first author in the last 3?years) towards workers' health or organisational behaviours. Workers will be recruited to have a diversity in terms of age, gender and working conditions. Quantitative data will be analysed to calculate the percentage of experts' agreement on four content validity indicators (ie, comprehensiveness, representativeness, relevance and clarity). Qualitative data will be examined through a thematic analysis strategy. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION:Approval of the research ethics board of the Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux de la Capitale Nationale has been obtained. Findings will be shared with various stakeholders inclusive of researchers, professionals and workers. Findings will be disseminated in workshops, peer-reviewed journals and conferences.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between irregular work schedules and sleep disturbance and compare the impacts of work schedule on sleep disturbance between occupational drivers and office workers. METHODS:Using data from the 3rd and 4th Korean Working Conditions Survey, 3,070 occupational drivers and 9,898 office workers were included in this study. The subjects' days of night work, evening work, and subjective complaints of sleep disturbance were investigated along with other covariates. RESULTS:In the multivariate logistic regression analyses, occupational drivers (odds ratio [OR], 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.51, 1.11-2.05), workers who were engaged in more night work (2.49, 1.84-3.38 for 1-15 days, and 3.80, 2.67-5.41 for 16-30 days) and evening work (2.22, 1.66-2.97 for 1-15 days, and 1.76, 1.26-2.45) were more likely to report sleep disturbance. Moreover, occupational driving showed significant interaction effects with both night and evening work on sleep disturbance, and therefore, showed higher ORs for sleep disturbance in the 16-30 days night (5.38, 3.40-8.52) and evening (3.13, 1.97-4.98) compared to no night and evening working office workers. CONCLUSIONS:Occupational drivers who are exposed to night work and evening work are at higher risks for sleep disturbance. Therefore, for the public and drivers' safety, optimal work schedules for minimising sleep disturbance should be developed.
Project description:OBJECTIVE:Shift work and long working hours are potential risk factors for dementia, but previous studies on shift work, long working hours and dementia are sparse and their findings are conflicting. Therefore, we investigated the effect of night shift work and long working hours on dementia. DESIGN:A longitudinal study. SETTING:Denmark. PARTICIPANTS:3435 occupationally active men and women from the general working population. METHODS:Work schedule covered day work (reference) and shift schedules without/with night work. Working hours covered <27, 28-36, 37 (reference), 38-44, and ≥45 hours/week. As the primary outcome, we used register-based information about dementia, and estimated incidence rate ratios (IRR) and 95% CI. Estimates were adjusted for gender, age, psychosocial work factors and cardiovascular risk factors. RESULTS:We identified 85 dementia cases during a mean of 9.8 years of follow-up. We found a positive, but statistically insignificant association between night shift work and dementia (IRR=2.01; 95% CI: 0.87-4.65). Post hoc analyses indicated that this was only due to a higher risk in permanent night workers (IRR=3.25; 95% CI: 1.35-7.83). The dementia risk was also significantly higher among participants working 38-44 hours/week (IRR=2.08; 95% CI: 1.11-3.90) compared with those working 37 hours/week. We found no indications of a higher risk of dementia in participants working <37 hours/week or ≥45 hours/week. CONCLUSION:We did not find arguments that night shift work or long working hours increased dementia risk in general. However, we found a higher risk of dementia in specific subgroups, that is, permanent night workers and employees with moderately longer weekly working hours than the standard.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Physical therapists working in the State of Kuwait are at risk of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs). However, prevalence rates and risk factors are not well documented. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence, characteristics, and impacts of WMSDs among physical therapists in the State of Kuwait. METHODS: A self-administered questionnaire was distributed to 350 physical therapists. The questionnaire gathered demographic data as well as information on occurrence of musculoskeletal complaints in the previous 12 months. Descriptive statistics, frequency, and Chi-square analyses were used. RESULTS: The response rate to the questionnaire was 63% (222/350). Of the 212 responders included in the study, the one-year prevalence of WMSDs was 47.6%, with lower back complaints as the most common (32%). This was followed by neck (21%), upper back (19%), shoulder (13%), hand/wrist (11%), knee (11%), ankle/foot (6%), elbow (4%), and hip/thigh (3%) complaints. The frequency of WMSDs was not gender related (except lower back, neck, and shoulder complaints) nor was it related to age (except lower back complaints), working venues (except hand/wrist), working hours, area of specialty, or exercise. WMSDs' impact on work was minor. CONCLUSIONS: WMSDs among physical therapists in Kuwait were common, with lower back and neck affected most. Lower back and neck WMSDs were related to the participant's demographics. Hand/wrist WMSDs were related to work settings. Further research is needed to investigate the effect of risk factors as physical load, psychosocial load, and general health status on prevalence musculoskeletal disorders.
Project description:Despite numerous changes in women's employment in the latter half of the twentieth century, women's employment continues to be uneven and stalled. Drawing from data on women's weekly work hours in the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY79), we identify significant inequality in women's labor force experiences across adulthood. We find two pathways of stable full-time work for women, three pathways of part-time employment, and a pathway of unpaid labor. A majority of women follow one of the two full-time work pathways, while fewer than 10% follow a pathway of unpaid labor. Our findings provide evidence of the lasting influence of work-family conflict and early socioeconomic advantages and disadvantages on women's work pathways. Indeed, race, poverty, educational attainment, and early family characteristics significantly shaped women's work careers. Work-family opportunities and constraints also were related to women's work hours, as were a woman's gendered beliefs and expectations. We conclude that women's employment pathways are a product of both their resources and changing social environment as well as individual agency. Significantly, we point to social stratification, gender ideologies, and work-family constraints, all working in concert, as key explanations for how women are "tracked" onto work pathways from an early age.
Project description:To characterise the burden of work-related injuries in South Australia, workers' compensation claim data were obtained from SafeWork South Australia between 2000 and 2014. Descriptive analyses were performed to investigate the burden of work-related injuries by age, gender, occupation, industry, and nature and mechanism of injury. Dunn's test was used to compare the injury costs and working days lost by industry and occupation. Ordinary linear regression was used to investigate the age-injury cost association. A total of 464,139 workers' compensation claims were reported during the 15-year period in South Australia, with an overall rate of 4.6 claims per 100 employees, resulting in a total of 20,861,001 working days lost and AU$14.9 billion dollars of compensation payment. Between 2000 to 2014, the annual claim rates, compensation payments, working days lost, and number of work-related death reduced by 59.3, 73.8, 87.1, and 78.6 percent, respectively, while the median compensation payment increased by 67.3% from AU$968 to AU$1620. A 1-year increase in age was associated with a 2.1% (Rate Ratio, RR = 1.021, 95% CI: 1.020-1.022) increase in compensation costs and a 1.3% (RR = 1.013, 95% CI: 1.012-1.020) increase in working days lost. Work-related injury rates are declining in most sectors, however some workers, especially young male technicians and labourers in the community services industry, remain at higher risk. Challenges for workers' health and safety include the aging labour force, vehicle incidents, and severe injuries among new and foreign-born workers.