Stressful employment factors 'can lead to cardiovascular disease'

19 September 2016

A new study has highlighted the potentially significant contribution that workplace stress is making to the global rise in cardiovascular disease.

Researchers from the University of California, Irvine and SUNY Downstate Medical Center have published a study showing how economic globalisation may be creating stressful employment factors in high-income countries that are increasing the risk of heart disease.

Characteristics such as unreasonable demands, low job control, effort-reward imbalance, job insecurity and long hours were all cited as factors that are driving an increase in hypertension and promoting unhealthy behaviours.

As such, the report calls for workplace culture to come under greater scrutiny worldwide to see how unhealthy stress factors can be reduced, with measures that potentially include setting maximum working hour limits, mandating holiday time for those in need of recovery, and ensuring greater economic security for precarious workers.

Dr Paul Landsbergis of SUNY Downstate Medical Center said: "Given the high costs of medical treatment and the economic impact on employers and society of ill health, lost productivity and sickness absence, it is in the interest of all to seriously consider improving work organisation."

Posted by Jeanette Royston


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