Does evening work predict sickness absence among female carers of the elderly?

Scand J Work Environ Health. 2008 Dec;34(6):483-6. doi: 10.5271/sjweh.1287.

Abstract

Objectives: The aim of the present study was to predict the risk ratio of sickness absence lasting > or = 2 weeks due to shift work among Danish workers caring for the elderly during the evening and at night.

Methods: A sample of Danish carers of the elderly were interviewed in 2005. The response rate was 78%. A cohort of 5627 shift and day workers was followed for sickness absence lasting > or = 2 weeks and for sickness absence lasting > or = 8 weeks in a sickness compensation register covering all social transfer payments in Denmark.

Results: Among the evening workers, the rate ratio (RR) of sickness absence lasting > or = 2 weeks was 1.29 (95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.10-1.52). The rate ratio for sickness absence lasting > or = 8 weeks was 1.24 (95% CI 0.99-1.56).

Conclusions: Evening work may cause long-term sickness absence lasting > or = 2 weeks.

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism
  • Adult
  • Caregivers / psychology*
  • Caregivers / statistics & numerical data*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Denmark
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Homes for the Aged*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Middle Aged
  • Poisson Distribution
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries
  • Sick Leave / statistics & numerical data*
  • Work Schedule Tolerance / psychology*
  • Young Adult