Work resumption after newly diagnosed coronary heart disease: findings on the importance of paid leave

J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2006 May;15(4):430-41. doi: 10.1089/jwh.2006.15.430.


Objectives: Studies have demonstrated the health benefits of work resumption for adults experiencing health problems, but there are important gaps in the research examining the factors that would help these individuals return to work. This study examines if working conditions predict whether women who experience angina or a myocardial infarction (MI) return to work.

Methods: A sample of 289 employed women from the Nurses' Health Study was analyzed. Bivariate chi-square and logistic regression analyses were conducted to examine the relationship between working conditions and the likelihood of returning to work after experiencing an MI or angina.

Results: Seventy-nine percent of women returned to work after experiencing an MI or angina. Women who had paid leave were substantially more likely to return to work after an MI or angina episode than women without this benefit (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 2.7, p = 0.04).

Conclusions: Public and corporate policies to promote paid leave for female workers who experience a serious health condition are likely to help these workers return to their jobs, thereby providing important health and economic benefits for both workers and society.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Angina, Unstable / economics*
  • Angina, Unstable / therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Insurance Benefits / economics
  • Myocardial Infarction / economics*
  • Myocardial Infarction / therapy
  • Nurses / economics
  • Nurses / statistics & numerical data*
  • Salaries and Fringe Benefits / economics
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States
  • Women, Working / statistics & numerical data*
  • Work Schedule Tolerance
  • Workers' Compensation / economics*
  • Workers' Compensation / statistics & numerical data