The Impact of Shift Work and Long Work Hours on Employers' Health Care Costs

Megan McHugh, Dustin D. French, Mary M. Kwasny, Claude R. Maechling, Jane L. Holl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To estimate the additional health care costs incurred by two U.S. manufacturing companies due to their policies related to shift work and long work hours. METHODS: We applied risk ratios from the published literature to data on 2647 workers from Company A and 1346 workers from Company B to estimate the excess cases of several chronic conditions in the worker population due to shift work and long work hours. We estimated the annual health care costs incurred by the companies by applying Medicare cost data. RESULTS: Excess annual health care costs related to shift work totaled $1,394,365 and $300,297 for Companies A and B, respectively. Excess annual costs related to long work hours totaled $231,293 and $107,902 for Companies A and B, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Excess health care costs related to shift work and long work hours is substantial, but may not be large enough to compel companies to alter their work scheduling policies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1006-1010
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of occupational and environmental medicine
Volume62
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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