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Systematic Review
Non-cancer health risks in firefighters: a systematic review
Jeong Ah Kim, Soo Yeon Song, Wonjeong Jeong, Jae Kwan Jun
Epidemiol Health. 2022;44:e2022109.   Published online November 16, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2022109
  • 5,303 View
  • 219 Download
  • 1 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
osFirefighters are occupationally exposed to hazardous factors that may increase their risk of disease. However, non-cancer disease risk in firefighters has not been systematically examined. This systematic review aimed to identify non-cancer disease risk in firefighters and determine whether the risk differs according to job characteristics. We searched the Cochrane Library, Embase, PubMed, and KoreaMed databases using relevant keywords from their inception to April 30, 2021. The Risk of Bias Assessment Tool for Non-randomized Studies version 2.0 was used to assess the quality of evidence. Due to study heterogeneity, a narrative synthesis was presented. The systematic literature search yielded 2,491 studies, of which 66 met the selection and quality criteria. We confirmed that the healthy worker effect is strong in firefighters as compared to the general population. We also identified a significant increase in the incidence of lumbar disc herniation, lower back pain, angina pectoris, acute myocardial infarction, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in firefighters compared to other occupational groups. Contradictory results for the risk of PTSD and anxiety disorders related to rank were reported. Sufficient evidence for increased risk of lumbar disc herniation, lower back pain, angina pectoris, acute myocardial infarction, and PTSD was available. The risk of non-cancer diseases varied depending on job type, years of service, and rank. However, caution should be exercised when interpreting the results because the classification criteria for firefighters’ jobs and ranks differ by country.
Summary
Korean summary
본 연구는 소방관과 비암성 질환과의 직업관련성을 파악하기 위해 체계적 문헌고찰을 수행하였다. 소방관은 근골격계 질환, 협심증, 심근경색, 외상후 스트레스 장애 등 일부 질환에서 일관된 직업관련성이 보고되었다. 하지만 대부분의 연구에서 연구결과가 건강근로자효과의 영향을 보정하지 못하였고 근무형태, 근무조건, 근무강도 등에 따라 일관되지 못한 결과를 보고하고 있다.
Key Message
In firefighters, risks of lumbar disc herniation, lower back pain, angina pectoris, acute myocardial infarction, and post-traumatic stress disorder were increased constantly. Due to the failure to avoid the healthy-worker effect, consistent relationship between firefighters and non-cancerous diseases has not been reported.

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  • Associations between Recognition and Behaviors Regarding the Use, Washing and Management of Firefighting Protection Suits and Public Health Awareness of Occupational Exposure Risks among Firefighters
    Soo Jin Kim, Seunghon Ham
    Fire.2024; 7(5): 156.     CrossRef
COVID-19: Original Article
Estimation of the number of working population at high-risk of COVID-19 infection in Korea
Juyeon Lee, Myounghee Kim
Epidemiol Health. 2020;42:e2020051.   Published online July 9, 2020
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2020051
  • 15,231 View
  • 414 Download
  • 19 Web of Science
  • 15 Crossref
AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
We aimed to identify occupational groups at high-risk of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection in Korea, to estimate the number of such workers, and to examine the prevalence of protective resources by employment status.
METHODS
Based on the sixth Standard Occupational Classification codes, 2015 census data were linked with data from the fifth Korean Working Conditions Survey, which measured how frequently workers directly come into contact with people other than fellow employees in the workplace.
RESULTS
A total of 30 occupational groups, including 7 occupations from the healthcare and welfare sectors and 23 from other sectors, were classified as high-risk occupational groups involving frequent contact with people other than fellow employees in the workplace (more than half of the working hours). Approximately 1.4 million (women, 79.1%) and 10.7 million workers (46.3%) are employed in high-risk occupations. Occupations with a larger proportion of women are more likely to be at a high-risk of infection and are paid less. For wage-earners in high-risk occupations, protective resources to deal with COVID-19 (e.g., trade unions and health and safety committees) are less prevalent among temporary or daily workers than among those with permanent employment.
CONCLUSIONS
Given the large number of Koreans employed in high-risk occupations and inequalities within the working population, the workplace needs to be the key locus for governmental actions to control COVID-19, and special consideration for vulnerable workers is warranted.
Summary
Korean summary
코로나바이러스감염증-19 (코로나19) 유행 상황에서 감염 고위험 직업군 종사자는 보건의료복지 업종에서 총 140만 명, 그 외 업종에서 총 1,073만 명으로 추정된다. 고위험 사업장에 대해 정부가 안전보건 관리·감독·규제 및 지원 체계를 수립하고, 방역대책의 중심에 노동자의 안전과 건강 보호를 두는 관점의 전환이 필요하다. 우선 당장 역학조사 과정에서 직업관련 요소를 자세히 확인하고, 직업관련 감염에 대한 모니터링과 그에 걸맞는 대책을 마련해야 한다.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Managing the unknown or the art of preventing SARS-CoV-2 infection in workplaces in a context of evolving science, precarious employment, and communication barriers. A qualitative situational analysis in Quebec and Ontario
    Daniel Côté, Ellen MacEachen, Ai-Thuy Huynh, Amelia León, Marie Laberge, Samantha Meyer, Shannon Majowicz, Joyceline Amoako, Yamin Jahangir, Jessica Dubé
    Frontiers in Public Health.2024;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Mobility and Thermal Comfort Assessment of Personal Protective Equipment for Female Healthcare Workers: Impact of Protective Levels and Body Mass Index
    Do-Hee Kim, Youngmin Jun, Ho-Joon Lee, Gyeongri Kang, Cho-Eun Lee, Joo-Young Lee
    Fashion & Textile Research Journal.2024; 26(1): 123.     CrossRef
  • The Relationship between COVID-19 Exposure Risk and Burnout in Prehospital Emergency Medical Technicians
    Karim Javanmardi, Neda Gilani, Mansour Ghafourifard, Abbas Dadashzadeh, Javad Dehghannejad, Hossein Feyzollahzade
    Journal of Caring Sciences.2023; 12(2): 123.     CrossRef
  • National and regional trends in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes and associated risk factors among Korean adults, 2009–2021
    Jiyeon Oh, Soeun Kim, Myeongcheol Lee, Sang Youl Rhee, Min Seo Kim, Ju-Young Shin, Hyunjung Lim, Seung Won Lee, Masoud Rahmati, Sunyoung Kim, Dong Keon Yon
    Scientific Reports.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Evaluation of Vaccination and Polymerase Chain Reaction Test Positivity of Hospital Personnel During the COVID-19 Pandemic
    Yasemin ASLAN, Ekrem SEVİM, Sinem GÜLER
    Acibadem Universitesi Saglik Bilimleri Dergisi.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Investigating the transmission risk of infectious disease outbreaks through the Aotearoa Co-incidence Network (ACN): a population-based study
    S.M. Turnbull, M. Hobbs, L. Gray, E.P. Harvey, W.M.L. Scarrold, D.R.J. O'Neale
    The Lancet Regional Health - Western Pacific.2022; 20: 100351.     CrossRef
  • Temporal trends of sex differences for COVID-19 infection, hospitalisation, severe disease, intensive care unit (ICU) admission and death: a meta-analysis of 229 studies covering over 10M patients
    Bart G. Pijls, Shahab Jolani, Anique Atherley, Janna I.R. Dijkstra, Gregor H.L. Franssen, Stevie Hendriks, Evan Yi-Wen Yu, Saurabh Zalpuri, Anke Richters, Maurice P. Zeegers
    F1000Research.2022; 11: 5.     CrossRef
  • Public Policy Measures to Increase Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Vaccination Rate in Russia
    Dmitry V. Boguslavsky, Natalia P. Sharova, Konstantin S. Sharov
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2022; 19(6): 3387.     CrossRef
  • The Gendered Outbreak of COVID-19 in South Korea
    Jinwoo Lee
    Feminist Economics.2022; 28(4): 89.     CrossRef
  • COVID-19 Fear, Health Behaviors, and Subjective Health Status of Call Center Workers
    Hye-Ryoung Kim, Hwa-Mi Yang
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2022; 19(15): 9005.     CrossRef
  • Trends in Occupational Infectious Diseases in South Korea and Classification of Industries According to the Risk of Biological Hazards Using K-Means Clustering
    Saemi Shin, Won Suck Yoon, Sang-Hoon Byeon
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2022; 19(19): 11922.     CrossRef
  • Self‐Report Assessment of Nurses’ Risk for Infection After Exposure to Patients With Coronavirus Disease (COVID‐19) in the United Arab Emirates
    Wegdan A. Bani‐Issa, Hussam Al Nusair, Abdalrahman Altamimi, Sarah Hatahet, Firas Deyab, Randa Fakhry, Roba Saqan, Salwa Ahmad, Fathia Almazem
    Journal of Nursing Scholarship.2021; 53(2): 171.     CrossRef
  • A rapid scoping review of COVID‐19 and vulnerable workers: Intersecting occupational and public health issues
    Daniel Côté, Steve Durant, Ellen MacEachen, Shannon Majowicz, Samantha Meyer, Ai‐Thuy Huynh, Marie Laberge, Jessica Dubé
    American Journal of Industrial Medicine.2021; 64(7): 551.     CrossRef
  • The Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Workplace Accidents in Korea
    Eun-Mi Baek, Woo-Yung Kim, Yoon-Jeong Kwon
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2021; 18(16): 8407.     CrossRef
  • Infection and Risk Perception of SARS-CoV-2 among Airport Workers: A Mixed Methods Study
    Jeadran Malagón-Rojas, Eliana L. Parra B, Marcela Mercado
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2020; 17(23): 9002.     CrossRef
Original Article
Factors associated with health-related quality of life in a working population in Singapore
Dhiya Mahirah, Charlotte Sauter, Thuan-Quoc Thach, Gerard Dunleavy, Nuraini Nazeha, George I. Christopoulos, Chee Kiong Soh, Josip Car
Epidemiol Health. 2020;42:e2020048.   Published online June 30, 2020
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2020048
  • 13,675 View
  • 235 Download
  • 5 Web of Science
  • 5 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Abstract
OBJECTIVES
This study aimed to evaluate the determinants of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) among workers in Singapore.
METHODS
We analysed data from a cross-sectional study of 464 participants from 4 companies in Singapore. Physical and mental components of HRQoL were assessed using the Short-Form 36 version 2.0 survey. A generalized linear model was used to determine factors associated with the physical component summary (PCS) and mental component summary (MCS) scores of HRQoL.
RESULTS
The overall mean PCS and MCS scores were mean±standard deviation 51.6±6.7 and 50.2±7.7, respectively. The scores for subscales ranged from 62.7±14.7 for vitality to 83.5±20.0 for role limitation due to emotional problems. Ethnicity, overweight/obesity, and years working at the company were significantly associated with physical HRQoL, and age and stress at work were significantly associated with mental HRQoL. Moreover, sleep quality was significantly associated with both physical and mental HRQoL.
CONCLUSIONS
These findings could help workplaces in planning strategies and initiatives for employees to maintain a worklife balance that encompasses their physical, emotional, and social well-being.
Summary

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  • Дослідження показників якості життя, пов’язаної зі здоров’ям, у розрізі трудової діяльності та безробіття (міжнародний досвід)
    Svitlana Indyka, Nataliia Bielikova
    Physical education, sport and health culture in modern society.2023; (3(63)): 12.     CrossRef
  • Prevalence of burnout among healthcare professionals in Singapore
    Kok Hian Tan, Boon Leng Lim, Zann Foo, Joo Ying Tang, Mabel Sim, Phong Teck Lee, Kok Yong Fong
    Annals of the Academy of Medicine, Singapore.2022; 51(7): 409.     CrossRef
  • Factors Associated with Health-Related Quality of Life among Government Employees in Putrajaya, Malaysia
    Muhamad Hasrol Mohd Ashri, Hazizi Abu Saad, Siti Nur’Asyura Adznam
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2021; 18(5): 2626.     CrossRef
  • Health-related quality of life in a general population sample in Kazakhstan and its sociodemographic and occupational determinants
    Denis Vinnikov, Aizhan Raushanova, Zhanna Romanova, Zhangir Tulekov
    Health and Quality of Life Outcomes.2021;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Association of Subjective Quality and Quantity of Sleep with Quality of Life among a General Population
    Kentaro Matsui, Takuya Yoshiike, Kentaro Nagao, Tomohiro Utsumi, Ayumi Tsuru, Rei Otsuki, Naoko Ayabe, Megumi Hazumi, Masahiro Suzuki, Kaori Saitoh, Sayaka Aritake-Okada, Yuichi Inoue, Kenichi Kuriyama
    International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.2021; 18(23): 12835.     CrossRef
COVID-19: Perspective
Prevention of exposure to and spread of COVID-19 using air purifiers: challenges and concerns
Seunghon Ham
Epidemiol Health. 2020;42:e2020027.   Published online April 17, 2020
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2020027
  • 24,213 View
  • 1,366 Download
  • 28 Web of Science
  • 24 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDF
Abstract
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is now a pandemic. The Korean government has declared a red alert, which is the highest level of the national infectious disease alert system, and the World Health Organization has similarly declared its highest-level pandemic alert (phase 6). The spread of COVID-19 is an unprecedented worldwide public health problem that governments and individuals must work to overcome. Recently, an infection cluster arose in a call center in Seoul. To support call center companies, the Korean Ministry of Employment and Labor has proposed covering the costs of installing partitions and air purifiers, providing hand sanitizers, and supplying masks to prevent droplet and aerosol infections. Air purifiers are expected to be installed on the floor with the exhaust outlets at a higher level, such as the level of the desks or breathing zones of workers. When a worker coughs or releases droplets near a colleague’s respiratory system, the droplets may spread throughout the call center via air flow from air purifier. In this fashion, a single infected person can give rise to an infection cluster. Attempts to prevent infection must not lead to new infections, and the installation of air purifiers may cause new problems. Therefore, using air purifiers to control the spread of COVID-19 should be approached with caution.
Summary

Citations

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    Ali Mahmoudi, Seyedeh Belin Tavakoly Sany, Marzieh Ahari Salmasi, Ali Bakhshi, Arad Bustan, Sahar heydari, Majid Rezayi, Fatemeh Gheybi
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Review
Occupational risk factors among Iranian farmworkers: a review of the available evidence
Mahin Ghafari, Zahra Cheraghi, Amin Doosti-Irani
Epidemiol Health. 2017;39:e2017027.   Published online July 2, 2017
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4178/epih.e2017027
  • 14,586 View
  • 257 Download
  • 7 Web of Science
  • 3 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDF
Abstract
Farming is one of the most important components of most economies. No comprehensive picture exists of the health status of Iranian farmers and the work-related hazards that affect them. We aimed to determine the gaps in the current knowledge regarding the occupational health of Iranian farmworkers. Electronic databases including Medline, Web of Science, Scopus, and Embase, as well as national databases including the Scientific Information Database, MagIran, and Barakat Knowledge System, were searched for articles published through March 2017. All epidemiologic studies regarding the occupational health of farmworkers in Iran were reviewed, regardless of their design, language, time of publication, and location. Of the 86 retrieved articles, 39 studies were ultimately analyzed. Most studies were conducted in Fars, Kerman, and Mazandaran provinces. According to the results of this review, chemical, physical, and biological hazards, along with work-related injuries, may be the main factors threatening the health of farmworkers. The unsafe use of pesticides was related to male infertility, eye and digestive complications, pesticide poisoning, pesticide absorption, hematological changes, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and multiple myeloma. Chemical hazards (e.g., the unsafe use of pesticides), physical hazards, injuries, and biological hazards (e.g., work-related infectious diseases) threaten the health of Iranian farmworkers. Moreover, farmworkers lack adequate knowledge about the occupational hazards they face and the relevant risk factors.
Summary

Citations

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  • Characteristics of Grape Shelf Eye Injuries at Vineyards in Japan
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