Scand J Work Environ Health 1997;23 suppl 1:7-11    pdf

Finnish research project on aging workers in 1981--1992

by Tuomi K, Ilmarinen J, Klockars M, Nygård C-H, Seitsamo J, Huuhtanen P, Martikainen R, Aalto L

The objective of this follow-up study of aging workers was to determine changes in the work, life-style, health, functional capacity, and stress symptoms of Finnish municipal employees from 1981 to 1992. In addition, factors that predict improvement or decline in the ability to work were studied. With the use of this information, attempts were made to produce practical measures to decrease the work-related health risks of elderly workers and increase factors promoting work ability. Along with the stress-strain model applied in the study, the reference frame of the World Health Organization (WHO) was used. The WHO model emphasizes the interaction between work, life-style, aging, and health. Work, life-style, health, work ability, and stress symptoms were studied through the use of comprehensive questionnaire surveys in 1981, 1985 and 1992. Initially, all the subjects (N=6257) were employed in municipal occupations. During the follow-up, the data were supplemented by information on disability to work and mortality. The changes in work, life-style, health, work ability, and stress symptoms were examined among employees who worked in the same job (N=924) during the entire follow-up period.

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