Ergonomic and psychosocial factors and musculoskeletal complaints in public sector administration

A joint monitoring approach with analysis of association
Administration entails a high level of computerization with multiple risk factors (including psychosocial and of ergonomic nature), affecting worker health and well-being. An ergonomics researcher supported by a senior ergonomist and guided by a domain specific checklist assessed physical ergonomics of an organization, including 96 administrative workers in the assessment. Unstructured observations and interviews to the workers were also done. Socio-demographic, musculoskeletal health and psychosocial job data was collected from a composite questionnaire including the versions validated for the Portuguese population of the Nordic Musculoskeletal Questionnaire (NMQ) and the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire (COPSOQ). This paper demonstrates an approach to jointly monitor multiple factors to support controlling work system efficiency, safeguarding health. Even though postural issues, especially static posture, have previously been identified as risk factors contributing to the onset of musculoskeletal disorders (MSD), the results of correlation analysis did not unveil a salient association between musculoskeletal complaints and ergonomic mismatches. The analysis did unveil statistically significant associations between exposure to psychosocial job factors and ergonomic risk factors. The pairs of variables actually associated were different according to gender confirming the need for future studies aiming the gendered study of MSD causality."

Source: Lima, T. M. et Coelho, D. A. (2018). International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 66, 85-94.

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