Working 55 hours or more a week is associated with a 35 percent higher risk of stroke and a 17 percent higher risk of dying from ischemic heart disease compared with a 35-40 hour working week, the World Health Organization (WHO) said, Report informs referring to Reuters.
"Working 55 hours or more per week is a serious health hazard," said Maria Neira, director of the WHO’s Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health.
In the first global study of the loss of life associated with longer working hours, the paper in the journal Environment International showed that 745,000 people died from stroke and heart disease associated with long working hours in 2016.
The joint study, produced by the WHO and the International Labor Organization, showed that most victims (72 percent) were men and were middle-aged or older. Often, the deaths occurred much later in life, sometimes decades later, than the shifts worked.
The study covered the period 2000-2016, and so did not include the COVID-19 pandemic, but WHO officials said the surge in remote working and the global economic slowdown resulting from the coronavirus emergency may have increased the risks.
"The pandemic is accelerating developments that could feed the trend towards increased working time," the WHO said, estimating that at least 9 percent of people work long hours.