Association between job-related stress and experience of presenteeism among Korean workers stratified on the presence of depression

Jihyun Kim, Yeong Kwang Kim, Sung Ho Leem, Jong Uk Won

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Presenteeism refers to the phenomenon of working while sick. Its development can be attributed to not only somatic symptoms but also underlying social agreements and workplace atmosphere. In this study, we analyzed presenteeism among workers from various industries, focusing on job-related stress with stratification on the presence of depression. Methods: We conducted the study with data from questionnaires filled in by different enterprises enrolled in the Federation of Korean Trade Unions. Workers' depressive symptoms were investigated using the Patient Health Questionnaire-2, while questions on job-related stress and presenteeism were derived from the short form of the Korean Occupational Stress Scale and the official Korean version of the Work-Productivity and Activity Impairment Questionnaire-General Health, respectively. Multilevel logistic analysis was conducted to determine the statistical differences derived from the differences between companies. Results: In total, 930 participants (753 men and 177 women) from 59 enterprises participated in the research. We conducted multilevel logistic regression to determine the association between the variables and presenteeism, with stratification by the presence of depression. Higher job demands and higher interpersonal conflict showed significantly elevated odds ratios (ORs) in univariate models and in the multivariate multilevel model. In the final model of total population, fully adjusted by general and work-related characteristics, higher job demands (OR: 3.29, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.08-5.21) and interpersonal conflict (OR: 1.87, 95% CI: 1.29-2.71) had significantly higher ORs-a tendency that remained in participants without depression. Conclusions: This study reflected the factors associated with presenteeism among workers from various enterprises. The findings revealed that job-related stress was closely related to presenteeism in both the total population and in the population without depression. Thus, it emphasized interventions for managing job stress among workers to reduce presenteeism in general workers' population.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere26
JournalAnnals of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Sept 30

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Korean Society of Occupational &Environmental Medicine.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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