Browsing by Subject "Long working hours"

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  • Pachito, Daniela V.; Pega, Frank; Bakusic, Jelena; Boonen, Emma; Clays, Els; Descatha, Alexis; Delvaux, Ellen; De Bacquer, Dirk; Koskenvuo, Karoliina; Kroeger, Hannes; Lambrechts, Marie-Claire; Latorraca, Carolina O. C.; Li, Jian; Cabrera Martimbianco, Ana L.; Riera, Rachel; Rugulies, Reiner; Sembajwe, Grace; Siegrist, Johannes; Sillanmäki, Lauri; Sumanen, Markku; Suominen, Sakari; Ujita, Yuka; Vandersmissen, Godelieve; Godderis, Lode (2021)
    Background: The World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) are developing Joint Estimates of the work-related burden of disease and injury (WHO/ILO Joint Estimates), with contributions from a large network of experts. Evidence from mechanistic data suggests that exposure to long working hours may increase alcohol consumption and cause alcohol use disorder. In this paper, we present a systematic review and meta-analysis of parameters for estimating the number of deaths and disability-adjusted life years from alcohol consumption and alcohol use disorder that are attributable to exposure to long working hours, for the development of the WHO/ILO Joint Estimates. Objectives: We aimed to systematically review and meta-analyse estimates of the effect of exposure to long working hours (three categories: 41-48, 49-54 and >55 h/week), compared with exposure to standard working hours (35-40 h/week), on alcohol consumption, risky drinking (three outcomes: prevalence, incidence and mortality) and alcohol use disorder (three outcomes: prevalence, incidence and mortality). Data sources: We developed and published a protocol, applying the Navigation Guide as an organizing systematic review framework where feasible. We searched electronic bibliographic databases for potentially relevant records from published and unpublished studies, including the WHO International Clinical Trials Register, Ovid MEDLINE, PubMed, Embase, and CISDOC on 30 June 2018. Searches on PubMed were updated on 18 April 2020. We also searched electronic grey literature databases, Internet search engines and organizational websites; hand searched reference list of previous systematic reviews and included study records; and consulted additional experts. Study eligibility and criteria: We included working-age (15 years) and unpaid domestic workers. We considered for inclusion randomized controlled trials, cohort studies, case-control studies and other nonrandomized intervention studies with an estimate of the effect of exposure to long working hours (41-48, 49-54 and 55 h/week), compared with exposure to standard working hours (35-40 h/week), on alcohol consumption (in g/week), risky drinking, and alcohol use disorder (prevalence, incidence or mortality). Study appraisal and synthesis methods: At least two review authors independently screened titles and abstracts against the eligibility criteria at a first stage and full texts of potentially eligible records at a second stage, followed by extraction of data from publications related to qualifying studies. Two or more review authors assessed the risk of bias, quality of evidence and strength of evidence, using Navigation Guide and GRADE tools and approaches adapted to this project. Results: Fourteen cohort studies met the inclusion criteria, comprising a total of 104,599 participants (52,107 females) in six countries of three WHO regions (Americas, South-East Asia, and Europe). The exposure and outcome were assessed with self-reported measures in most studies. Across included studies, risk of bias was generally probably high, with risk judged high or probably high for detection bias and missing data for alcohol consumption and risky drinking. Compared to working 35-40 h/week, exposure to working 41-48 h/week increased alcohol consumption by 10.4 g/week (95% confidence interval (CI) 5.59-15.20; seven studies; 25,904 participants, I2 71%, low quality evidence). Exposure to working 49-54 h/week increased alcohol consumption by 17.69 g/week (95% confidence interval (CI) 9.16-26.22; seven studies, 19,158 participants, I2 82%, low quality evidence). Exposure to working >55 h/week increased alcohol consumption by 16.29 g/week (95% confidence interval (CI) 7.93-24.65; seven studies; 19,692 participants; I2 82%, low quality evidence). We are uncertain about the effect of exposure to working 41-48 h/week, compared with working 35-40 h/week on developing risky drinking (relative risk 1.08; 95% CI 0.86-1.36; 12 studies; I2 52%, low certainty evidence). Working 49-54 h/week did not increase the risk of developing risky drinking (relative risk 1.12; 95% CI 0.90-1.39; 12 studies; 3832 participants; I2 24%, moderate certainty evidence), nor working >55 h/week (relative risk 1.11; 95% CI 0.95-1.30; 12 studies; 4525 participants; I2 0%, moderate certainty evidence). Subgroup analyses indicated that age may influence the association between long working hours and both alcohol consumption and risky drinking. We did not identify studies for which we had access to results on alcohol use disorder. Conclusions: Overall, for alcohol consumption in g/week and for risky drinking, we judged this body of evidence to be of low certainty. Exposure to long working hours may have increased alcohol consumption, but we are uncertain about the effect on risky drinking. We found no eligible studies on the effect on alcohol use disorder. Producing estimates for the burden of alcohol use disorder attributable to exposure to long working hours appears to not be evidence-based at this time. Protocol identifier: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envint.2018.07.025. PROSPERO registration number: CRD42018084077
  • Kivimäki, Mika; Virtanen, Marianna; Nyberg, Solja T.; Batty, G. David (2020)
    Working hours is a ubiquitous exposure given that most adults are employed, and one that is modifiable via legislative change if not always through individual-level choice. According to a recent report from the World Health Organization (WHO) and International Labour Organization (ILO), there is currently sufficient evidence to conclude that long working hours (i.e., >= 55 h per week) elevate the risk of fatal and non-fatal ischaemic heart disease to a clinically meaningful extent. After assessing the data used by the ILO/WHO, we feel that the expert group has not correctly applied their own framework for assessing the strength of the evidence. In the meta-analysis of observational studies in the report, the association between long working hours and incident heart disease appeared stronger in lower quality cohort studies with a high risk of bias (minimally-adjusted hazard ratio 1.20, 95% CI 1.01-1.41, compared to standard 35-40 weekly hours) than in the superior-quality studies with a lower risk of bias for which the estimate was not significantly different from the null (1.08, 95% CI 0.93-1.25). There was also marked effect modification, such that there was no increase in ischaemic heart disease for those working long hours in high socioeconomic status occupations, a finding also reported in analyses of a recent census-based cohort study which was not included in the report. Our meta-analysis of all these studies confirm that the findings are not consistent but differ between subgroups and that the summary age- and sex-adjusted hazard ratio for long working hours in high socioeconomic status occupations does not support excess risk: 0.85, 95% CI 0.63-1.13 (Pinteraction = 0.005, total N = 451,982). For these and other reasons detailed in this commentary, we advance a more cautious interpretation of the existing evidence. The conclusions should be restricted to low socioeconomic status occupations only and more research is still needed to confirm or refute harmfulness and determine clinical relevance.