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NIOSH OHP activities: training products for workers on shift work and long work hours.

Newsl Soc Occup Health Psychol 2009 Jan; 5:16-17
The current article will describe another fatigue related project, the purpose of which is to develop a training program that informs workers and managers of the risks associated with shift work and long work hours. A second aim of the project is to introduce strategies to reduce these risks. About 15% of U.S, full time workers are on shift-work schedules (McMenamin, 2008) and an estimated 20% work long hours (Jacobs & Gerson, 2004). Shift work and long work hours are linked to a growing number of health and safety problems including injuries, worker errors, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal disorders, mental disturbances, and adverse reproductive outcomes (Arnedt et al. 2005; Barger et al. 2005; Bøggild & Knutsson, 1999; Caruso et al. 2004; Dembe et al., 2005; Folkard & Lombardi, 2006; Frazier & Grainger, 2003; Hanna et al., 2005; Knutsson, 2003; Landrigan et al., 2004; Mozurkewich et al., 2000; Rogers et al., 2004; Rohr et al., 2003; Sood, 2003; Thomas & Raynar, 1997; Tuntiseranee et al., 1998). In 2007, the International Agency for Research on Cancer of the World Health Organization announced that shift work coupled with circadian disruption is a probable carcinogen. A recent review of the literature reports that long work hours are associated with musculoskeletal disorders, which are possibly due to increased physical demands (Caruso & Waters, in press). Fatigue- related worker mistakes and errors can also affect families and communities through work/family conflict, vehicular crashes, patient care errors, and industrial disasters. The scientific community has generated knowledge about these risks and strategies to reduce them, but this information has not been sufficiently disseminated to U.S. workers and their managers. To fill this need, NIOSH is developing work schedule risk prevention training products to educate four audiences in this regard - miners, nurses, retail workers, and truck drivers.
Shift-work; Shift-workers; Sociological-factors; Circadian-rhythms; Sleep-deprivation; Sleep-disorders; Gastrointestinal-system-disorders; Stress; Psychological-effects; Cardiovascular-function; Training
Publication Date
Document Type
Newsletter; Lay Publication
Fiscal Year
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Healthcare and Social Assistance; Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities
Source Name
Newsletter of the Society for Occupational Health Psychology
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division