Longitudinal Investigation of the Impacts of Work Stress on Workers’ Mental Health

Objectives: To investigate (1) whether changes in work stress affect the risk of developing major depression, (2) how work stress interacts with psychosocial factors outside workplace in relation to the risk of major depression, and (3) the long-term impacts of work stress and major depression on cognitive function, employment, marital status and mortality.

Funding Source: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

Data source: The longitudinal cohort of the National Population Health Survey (1994 – 2003)

Status: Completed

The Population-Based Longitudinal Study on Work and Health: Study Findings and Summary

Dear Participants,

On behalf of the entire research staff here at the University of Calgary we would like to thank you for your participation and continued support. The study has ended and is now in the data analysis phase. The complete findings will be published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The results have indicated that identifying and receiving workplace mental health accommodations – such as weekly meetings between the supervisor and the employee or exchanging of minor tasks with other employees – was associated with better outcomes for mental health. The accommodations are generally simple and inexpensive to implement and would be a beneficial way for employers to improve the workplace for employees with mental health concerns.

Below are publications that have resulted from the data set thus far:

  1. Liu Y, Wang JL. Validity of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 for DSM-IV Major Depressive Disorder in a Sample of Canadian Working Population. Journal of Affective Disorders. 2015 Aug 24; 187:122-126.
  2. Bolo C, Sareen J, Paten SB, Schmitz N, Currie SR, Wang JL. Receiving workplace mental health accommodations and the outcome of mental disorders in employees with a depressive and/or anxiety disorder. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 2013, November. 55(11): 1293-1299.
  3. Liu Y, Sareen J, Bolton J, Wang JL. Development and validation of a risk prediction algorithm for the recurrence of suicidal ideation among general population with low mood. Journal of Affective Disorders. In press.
  4. Kunyk D, Craig-Broadwith M, Morris H, Diaz R, Reisdorfer E, Wang JL. Employers’ perceptions and attitudes towards the Canadian national standard on psychological health and safety in the workplace. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry. 2016, Feb. 44: 41-47.
  5. Liu Y, Sareen J, Bolton J, Wang JL. Development and validation of a prediction algorithm for recurrence of panic disorder. Depression and Anxiety. 2015 May. 32(5): 341-348.
  6. Wang JL, Patten SB, Sareen J, Bolton J, Schmitz N, MacQueen G. Development and validation of a prediction algorithm for use by health professionals in prediction of recurrence of major depression. Depression and Anxiety. 2014, May; 31(5): 451-457. DOI: 10.1002/da.22215.
  7. Wang JL, Sareen J, Patten SB, Bolton J, Schmitz N, Birney A. A Prediction Algorithm for First Onset of Major Depression in the General Population: Development and Validation. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. 2014, May; 68(5):418-424 doi:10.1136/jech-2013-202845
  8. Wang JL, Manuel D, Williams J, Schmitz N, Gilmour H, Patten SB, MacQueen G, Birney A. Development and Validation of Prediction Algorithms for Major Depressive Episode in the General Population. Journal of Affective Disorders. 2013, August; 151: 39-45.

Click here for the complete summary report!

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