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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 21  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 128-131

Effort–Reward Imbalance and its Association with Health among Pluckers in a Tea Plantation in South India

Department of Community Medicine, St. John's Medical College, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Chitra Tomy
Department of Community Medicine, St. John's Medical College, Bengaluru, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijoem.IJOEM_141_17

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Context: Work-related stress is associated with cardiovascular diseases, musculoskeletal disorders, psychological ailments, and work-related injuries. Imbalance between high effort and low reward at work can lead to work stress among plantation workers. Aims: To assess the effort–reward imbalance (ERI) among pluckers in tea plantations in South India and its association on chronic health problems, substance abuses, and workplace injuries. Settings and Design: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 346 tea pluckers from May to June 2015 in six selected tea plantations in Anamalai, South India. Patients and Methods: A short version of ERI questionnaire was used to assess the work-related stress among them. Along with ERI questionnaire, sociodemographic details, chronic diseases, substance abuses, and workplace injuries were ascertained. Statistical Analysis Used: Sociodemographic variables were described as frequency and measures of central tendency. Tests of association, such as Chi-square test, were applied. Results: Among the study population, 322 (93.1%) reported more effort, 23 (6.6%) reported more reward, and one (0.3%) had no imbalance between effort and reward. Those in older age group (≥51 years) experienced more effort compared to those in younger age group (≤50 years) (Fisher's exact = 21.905, P = 0.001). Educational status (Fisher's exact = 15.639, P = 0.027) and work experience (Fisher's exact = 23.122, P = 0.003) increased the effort rather than increasing the reward associated with work. No significant association was found between ERI and any chronic diseases, substance abuses, or injuries. Conclusions: Majority of pluckers in tea plantation experienced more effort compared to reward.


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