This study has been conducted to describe the situation of long-term sick-listed persons employed in the public sector regarding the medical reasons of their sick leave, the duration of their problems, the duration of the actual sick leave, rehabilitation support, rehabilitation measures, and the persons expectations of the future. Response rate of a postal questionnaire, where 484 women and 51 men on long-term sick leave answered, was 69%. The study-group consisted of 90% women with a median age of 50 years. The most common reasons for sick listing were long-lasting musculoskeletal problems, especially neck/shoulder pain, low back pain and osteoarthritis or other joint problems and mental problems, especially depression and burn-out syndromes. Forty-seven procent of the men and 57% of the women had been on the sick list for more than a year. Only half of them had been subjected to the legally required rehabilitation investigation of the employer This half got access to rehabilitation programs and/or vocational rehabilitation to a greater extent than those who not had been subjected to rehabilitation investigation. Less than half had been in contact with the workplace-connected rehabilitation actors, the Occupational Health Service or the Trade Union. In spite of this the sick-listed persons had a positive view of their future return to work. For long-term sick-listed persons in the public sector, there is a great potential for improvements of the rehabilitation at the workplace arena, in the involvement and cooperation between the already existing rehabilitation actors, in order to promote return to work.
BACKGROUND: Since 1997 the number of long-term sick-listed people in Sweden has increased dramatically, especially among women employed in the public sector. AIMS: The aim of this study was to investigate associations between age, social situation, lifestyle, work factors, and long-term sick-listing (> or =28 days), regardless of diagnosis, during a period of three years among women employed in the public sector. METHODS: Exposure information at baseline was recorded by a questionnaire. All new spells of sick listing (> or =28 days were consecutively reported from the employer for three years from baseline. In total 6,246 women from the public sector in Sweden answered the questionnaire (85% response rate); 5,224 were classified as having good or rather good health for working and were included. Of these, 918 persons had spells of sick-listing (> or =28 days during follow-up. RESULTS: Univariate and multivariate analyses for calculating relative risks (RR) were carried out. In the Cox regression model age (RR 1.4), strained financial situation (RR 1.3), obesity (RR 1.3), bullying (RR 1.5), physical demands at work higher than own capacity (RR 1.5), and mental demands at work higher than own capacity (1.2) remained risk indicators for long-term sick-listing. CONCLUSION: This study suggests prevention of some work and lifestyle factors as general measures to reduce long-term sick-listing among women in the public sector.
There is a lack of information on positive work factors among health care workers.
To explore salutogenic work-related factors among primary health care employees.
Questionnaire to all employees (n?=?599) from different professions in public and private primary health care centers in one health care district in Sweden. The questionnaire, which had a salutogenic perspective, included information on self-rated health from the previously validated SHIS (Salutogenic Health Indicator Scale), psychosocial work environment and experiences, recovery, leadership, social climate, reflection and work-life balance.
The response rate was 84%. A multivariable linear regression model, with SHIS as the dependent variable, showed three significant predictors. Recovery had the highest relationship to SHIS (ß=?0.34), followed by experience of work-life balance (ß=?0.25) and work experiences (ß=?0.20). Increased experience of recovery during working hours related to higher self-rated health independent of recovery outside work.
Individual experiences of work, work-life balance and, most importantly, recovery seem to be essential areas for health promotion. Recovery outside the workplace has been studied previously, but since recovery during work was shown to be of great importance in relation to higher self-rated health, more research is needed to explore different recovery strategies in the workplace.
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