Original article

Scand J Work Environ Health 2015;41(4):329-337    pdf full text

doi:10.5271/sjweh.3498

Precarious employment and new-onset severe depressive symptoms: a population-based prospective study in South Korea

by Jang S-Y, Jang S-I, Bae H-C, Shin J, Park E-C

Objectives Considering the effect of sex and head of household responsibilities, this study was designed to evaluate whether precarious employment is associated with the development of new-onset severe depressive symptoms.

Methods We followed 2214 male and 1276 female waged workers, ≤59 years of age and without moderate depressive symptom, from the Korean Welfare Panel Study 2007–2013. Their employment status was classified as full-time permanent, precarious, self-employed, or unemployed after baseline. Except for occupation and company size, all variables were treated as time-dependent. Severe depressive symptoms were measured using the 11-item Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D-11). A generalized estimating equation was used to evaluate the effect of employment status on the development of new-onset severe depressive symptoms.

Results After adjusting for initial baseline CES-D-11 score, chronic disease, and other socioeconomic covariates, precarious employment was associated with the development of new-onset severe depressive symptoms among male heads of household [odds ratio (OR) 1.52, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.02–2.25] and female heads of household (OR 4.19, 95% CI 1.70–10.32). In addition, the transition from full-time permanent employment to another employment status was associated with the development of new-onset severe depressive symptoms among both sexes, with an especially strong association among females.

Conclusion The present study suggests that, depending on head of household status and sex, precarious employment is associated with the development of new-onset severe depressive symptoms.

This article refers to the following texts of the Journal: 2014;40(5):465-472  2014;40(4):343-352  2012;38(6):537-545  2007;33(5):344-350  2006;32(6):473-481
The following article refers to this text: 2015;41(4):325-327