Empowering workers, offering support can impact musculoskeletal injuries
Researchers from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden examined the correlation between decision latitude, psychological workload and social support, and neck, shoulder, and low back symptoms of MSDs. The study, published in the International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, looked at nearly 1,700 female human service workers. The researchers found that high strain work -- high psychological load coupled with low decision latitude -- in combination with low social support was related to increased risks of developing symptoms in all of the body regions that were studied.
The results indicate that, in order to minimize the occurrence of musculoskeletal symptoms, employees should have adequate levels of decision latitude, optimal levels of work, and supervisor support and structures that facilitate coworker support, said Pernilla Larsman and Jan Johansson, authors of the study.
May 11, 2009
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