Cardiovascular diseases have a highly significant impact on the economy. Since 2010 Unit 3.1 of the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin, BAuA) has consequently been working on their aetiology, which is determined by multiple factors.
The Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) participates in the 10-year follow up of the Gutenberg Health Study (Gutenberg Gesundheitsstudie, GHS) in the Mainz area. The effect of work-related risk factors such as night shift work, psychosocial stress, and overlong working hours on the cardiovascular system is being investigated on the basis of the GHS, a population-based cohort study with 11,250 individuals between the ages of 25 and 74 years. The intention is to show whether the consideration of psychosocial occupational factors improves the predictive power of classic risk profiles, whether night work is a risk factor for employees with existing high blood pressure and what long-term aspects of professional biographies are connected to manifest cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.
The professional biographical aspects include among others the use of digital means of communication and new technologies and how employees evaluate these technologies, which was surveyed with a newly developed questionnaire module on industry 4.0 issues. In addition, the current status of occupational reintegration and its conditions when returning to work after illness are being looked at with a new questionnaire module in the occupational health part of the Gutenberg Health Study.
The development and occurrence of diabetes are also being studied as part of
Project F 2447. The focus here is on two work-related factors: activities that require prolonged sitting and job insecurity. A possible connection between a decline in professional competence/skill level and diabetes will also be examined. With regard to employees whose job involves prolonged standing, it should be established whether this will result in unfavourable characteristics of early cardiovascular parameters compared to employees without these activities.
The data from the Gutenberg Health Study are to be linked with routine health and social insurance data as part of a feasibility study, making it possible to examine the consistency of the self-reported data on employment and the use of services. The aim of this project is to present newly acquired knowledge to be used in workplace practice (e.g. Guideline Shift Work (Leitlinie Schichtarbeit)) and the provision of policy advice, for instance the Collective Agreement on Digitalisation (Digitalisierungstarifvertrag).
Unit 3.1 "Prevention of Work-related Diseases"