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Article
Publication date: 16 September 2013

Kirsty Humphrey and Andrew McDowell

The aim of the current paper is to examine if participants attitudes and perceptions regarding risk leads to subsequent risky behaviours as this is indicative of sexual…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of the current paper is to examine if participants attitudes and perceptions regarding risk leads to subsequent risky behaviours as this is indicative of sexual health and teenage pregnancy. The second aim was to explore if sense of coherence (SOC) (a predictor of mental health) mediates the relationship between perceived risk and risky health behaviours (RHB), or even be used as an indicator for RHB.

Design/methodology/approach

Young people from a targeted youth mental health programme for “at risk” teenagers, were asked to complete a battery of measures: SOC, The Adolescent Risk Behaviour Survey (ARBS) and RHB post-programme.

Findings

RHB such as drinking alcohol, taking drugs and smoking, correlated positively with attitudes to risk and negatively with SOC. Hierarchical regression analysis revealed that there was a significant relationship between ARBS and reported health behaviour, which was strengthened by SOC. SOC contributes to the relationship between attitudes and perception of risk and RHB, whereby individuals with stronger SOC were less likely to partake in RHB. Qualitative analysis revealed that the components of SOC (comprehensibility, manageability and meaningfulness) were perceptible six months minimum after the programme has been undertaken.

Research limitations/implications

The present research was unable to obtain SOC baseline scores which could be used as evidence of the programme's impact. Furthermore, participants had completed the programme six months to six years previously, hence were relying on memory recall and self-report. Future research would incorporate three points of data collection on SOC in order to monitor change in relation to perceived risk and risk behaviours.

Practical implications

The paper provides a good framework in terms of adding value of the SOC concept for understanding the world of at risk young people and their psychological wellbeing, and a future tool for tracking whether changes occur. RHB in adolescence lead to health related problems as well as risk taking in adulthood, costing the NHS.

Social implications

The intervention itself aims to target individuals at risk from being not in employment, education or training or teen parents which has wider social implications relating to educational engagement, health behaviours and the community.

Originality/value

The data analysis is applied to a specific group of at risk young people, on a novel intervention which uses an experiential learning model in order to encourage self awareness through the interaction with toddlers, as well as build self efficacy, improve mental health, self-esteem and decision making ability. The battery of measures used in combination within the research context is unique.

Details

Journal of Public Mental Health, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5729

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 27 August 2014

Damian Tago, Henrik Andersson and Nicolas Treich

This study contributes to the understanding of the health effects of pesticides exposure and of how pesticides have been and should be regulated.

Abstract

Purpose

This study contributes to the understanding of the health effects of pesticides exposure and of how pesticides have been and should be regulated.

Design/methodology/approach

This study presents literature reviews for the period 2000–2013 on (i) the health effects of pesticides and on (ii) preference valuation of health risks related to pesticides, as well as a discussion of the role of benefit-cost analysis applied to pesticide regulatory measures.

Findings

This study indicates that the health literature has focused on individuals with direct exposure to pesticides, i.e. farmers, while the literature on preference valuation has focused on those with indirect exposure, i.e. consumers. The discussion highlights the need to clarify the rationale for regulating pesticides, the role of risk perceptions in benefit-cost analysis, and the importance of inter-disciplinary research in this area.

Originality/value

This study relates findings of different disciplines (health, economics, public policy) regarding pesticides, and identifies gaps for future research.

Details

Preference Measurement in Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-029-2

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 October 2019

Gerard A. Finnigan

The rapid deterioration of the earth’s natural ecosystems are increasing the risk of human morbidity and mortality worldwide. Hydrometeorological hazards are concentrating…

Abstract

Purpose

The rapid deterioration of the earth’s natural ecosystems are increasing the risk of human morbidity and mortality worldwide. Hydrometeorological hazards are concentrating contaminants from the damaged environment and exposing large vulnerable populations to life threating illnesses and death. This study performed a retrospective health risk assessment on two recent events where such impacts unfolded, namely, the 2015 south east Equatorial Asia smoke haze disaster and the 2016 Melbourne thunderstorm asthma epidemic. The purpose of this paper is to test if the characterisation of health risk warranted earlier and more effective risk reduction activities prior to the disasters occurring.

Design/methodology/approach

A retrospective health risk characterisation assessment was performed combing United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Risk Health Aspect in Disaster Risk Assessment (2017) framework with a thematic and targeted word literature review to identify the level of risk knowledge prior to each event. A risk characterisation matrix was then created to characterise the health risk of each hazard event.

Findings

The 2015 south east Equatorial Asia smoke haze disaster risk assessment was characterised as “extreme” health risk and the 2016 Melbourne thunderstorm asthma epidemic was characterised as “high” health risk.

Practical implications

Reaching the goals of the Sendai Framework require strategies and plans which urgently address the catastrophic level of mortality risk posed by exposure to environmental contaminants.

Originality/value

Innovative approaches and partnerships are necessary to mitigate the risk from the deteriorating health of the environment and natural ecosystems, along with disaster response initiatives that reduce exposure of vulnerable people on a large scale.

Details

Disaster Prevention and Management: An International Journal, vol. 28 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-3562

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 September 2011

Mary L. Marzec, Thomas Golaszewski, Shirley Musich, Patricia E. Powers, Sandra Shewry and Dee W. Edington

The purpose of this study is to determine results of an environmental approach to improving employee health status in a government employer setting.

1187

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to determine results of an environmental approach to improving employee health status in a government employer setting.

Design/methodology/approach

This is an observational study of one worksite and its employees from 2005 to 2007. Environmental interventions were part of the worksite environment, accessible, and applicable to employees regardless of health status. Outcomes were: change in the worksite environment using the Heart Check assessment, change in employee health risks using health risk appraisals (HRAs) and change in hours of sick time. The eligible population included active employees from 2005 to 2007 (n=2,276).

Findings

The Heart Check score increased by 26 percentage points. Despite aging of HRA participants, results showed maintenance of risk status with a non‐significant increase in percent at low risk (51.6 percent to 53.1 percent). Percent at high risk had a non‐significant decrease (21.1 percent to 20.2 percent). The three‐month average for hours of sick time decreased from 12.7 to 11.6 hours (p=0.03) for the larger eligible population.

Originality/value

This paper offers qualitative information for others seeking to implement population‐based health promotion interventions. This particular setting presented challenges related to union and non‐union regulations, sub‐contractors, and multiple administrative levels. Quantitatively, change of health risks and absenteeism serves as a reference to others engaging in workplace health promotion.

Details

International Journal of Workplace Health Management, vol. 4 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8351

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 28 March 2008

Dee W. Edington and Alyssa B. Schultz

The goal of this review is to present the literature which provides evidence of the association between health risks and the workplace economic measures of time away from…

3342

Abstract

Purpose

The goal of this review is to present the literature which provides evidence of the association between health risks and the workplace economic measures of time away from work, reduced productivity at work, health care costs and pharmaceutical costs.

Design/methodology/approach

A search of PubMed was conducted which combined the keyword search terms “health risks” with “health costs”, “pharmaceutical costs”, “absenteeism”, “productivity”, “workers compensation”, and “presenteeism”. High quality studies were selected and combined with studies known to the authors.

Findings

A strong body of evidence exists which shows that health risks of employees are associated with health care costs and pharmaceutical costs. A growing body of literature also confirms that health risks are associated with the productivity measures of time away from work, workers' compensation, absenteeism and presenteeism. Furthermore, studies have shown that changes in risks are associated with changes in health care costs, time‐away‐from‐work and presenteeism.

Originality/value

The paper shows that measures of success will continue to be important as the field of worksite health management moves forward. Research needs to progress beyond simple associations to the evaluation of changes in costs, trends and transitions over time.

Details

International Journal of Workplace Health Management, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8351

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 September 2011

Sami A. Zabin

The purpose of this paper is to understand how Saudis perceive chemical pollution health risks. Also, it attempts to investigate whether there are gender, age, education…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to understand how Saudis perceive chemical pollution health risks. Also, it attempts to investigate whether there are gender, age, education, and place of residence differences in health risk perception.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire was designed and developed as a descriptive survey of the target population's perceptions of the impact of chemical contaminants on health. Statistical data analysis was conducted to determine the response difference among variables.

Findings

The survey demonstrated higher perceptions of health risk among females as compared to males in general and that females are more likely than males to rank items as a high risk. Most gender differences were statistically significant (F(23, 516)=4.906, p<0.001). This is in agreement with some other studies in the world. The older age group is, in general, more likely to consider something as being a high‐health risk. Also, respondents with higher education were more likely to rate more health risks as “high risk” than were other respondents. Meanwhile, there was no difference in health risk perception according to place of residence.

Originality/value

Saudis face increasing health risks due to chemical pollution. Very little is known about chemical pollution concern and health risk perceptions in the Saudi society. Understanding public chemicals health risk perceptions is the basis of an effective strategy for environmental health risk management. The results of this survey will provide useful information to policy makers to improve health risk communication and develop effective health risks management policies.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 22 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 1998

Sharon Stower

This article demonstrates the Queen’s Medical Centre approach to assessing and addressing risk in terms of Health and Safety within a busy children’s unit. This article…

869

Abstract

This article demonstrates the Queen’s Medical Centre approach to assessing and addressing risk in terms of Health and Safety within a busy children’s unit. This article focuses on compartmentalising a large clinical area on two floors of a busy teaching hospital which become manageable sized subunits; each has a health, safety and risk management link person who attends the regular meetings to discuss key issues. These link people, with experience and training observe clinical areas within the zone, for hazards and potential hazards (risk inspection) and then calculate the hazard on a risk score. This is then risk assessed and all risk prioritised within the Children’s Services Directorate Team. The author describes how a proactive approach to health, safety and risk management has brought about significant improvements, enhanced quality of care and improved morale and motivation of the nursing team.

Details

International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, vol. 11 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0952-6862

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 6 September 2010

Brenda J. Nordenstam and Sarah Darkwa

Purpose – This study explores the relationship between fish consumption advisories and risk perception, knowledge, and behavior of anglers in the Great Lakes. The Great…

Abstract

Purpose – This study explores the relationship between fish consumption advisories and risk perception, knowledge, and behavior of anglers in the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes contain elevated levels of critical pollutants and chemicals. Fish consumption advisories have been employed by health and environmental agencies to increase public awareness and lower exposure to contaminated fish caught in the Great Lakes. However, awareness and response to these advisories is not universal and may vary on the basis of sociocultural factors. Poor and minority anglers may be less aware of health advisories and more likely to exceed the recommended fish consumption limits than white anglers. Relying on health advisories as the primary mechanism for limiting exposure may not adequately meet environmental justice goals to protect the health and safety of all people.

Design/methodology/approach – One hundred and twenty Lake Ontario boating anglers were surveyed. Factors examined include awareness and source of health advisories; level of concern about health risks; and fish consumption rate and risk reduction behaviors.

Findings – Results indicate that ethnicity, age, and education influence awareness and response to health advisories. We conclude with suggestions to better address environmental injustices by strengthening the inclusion of local knowledge and participation in the decision-making and risk management process.

Practical implication – Findings have implications for the impact and future content of Great Lakes fish advisories.

Originality/value – There have been few comparative studies using socioeconomic factors, such as race and education, when addressing awareness of fish advisories and relative risk of toxicity from Great Lakes recreational boat anglers.

Details

Environment and Social Justice: An International Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-183-2

Book part
Publication date: 16 August 2014

Kristien Stassen and Pieter Leroy

Risk governance is being successfully inserted into scientific and political agendas as a way to understand and address complex problems, such as health problems that have…

Abstract

Purpose

Risk governance is being successfully inserted into scientific and political agendas as a way to understand and address complex problems, such as health problems that have both social and ecological dimensions. However, to date, the debate on risk governance has remained rather conceptual. This chapter addresses these lacunae through describing research that was conducted on the Flemish environmental health governance arrangement and draws on this empirical case study to suggest ways that risk governance can be put into practice.

Methodology

The case study analysis was conducted through a mixed methods study that combined document analysis and data gathered through 22 in-depth interviews with environmental and health scientists as well as policymakers.

Findings

This research shows that the Flemish environmental health risk governance arrangement has succeeded in increasing the exchange of information between: (1) governments at a variety of levels; (2) scientists, policymakers and the general public and (3) environmental and public health civil servants. The analysis also provides insights into some shortcomings and makes recommendations for ameliorating this arrangement: (1) the integration of environmental health objectives into all relevant policy domains, (2) the need for additional research into environmental health indicators and (3) the facilitation of the co-production of knowledge and multi-actor governance.

Originality/value of paper

Empirical contributions and analysis about risk governance and policy formation processes are not often conducted. The added value of this Flemish case study is that it presents an example of good practice from which lessons for future risk governance arrangements can be drawn.

Details

Ecological Health: Society, Ecology and Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-323-0

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 27 August 2014

L. Warshawsky-Livne, L. Novack, A. B. Rosen, S. M. Downs, J. Shkolnik-Inbar and J. S. Pliskin

A rich literature has documented gender-based differences in health care utilization and outcomes. The role of risk attitude in explaining the variations is limited at…

Abstract

Purpose

A rich literature has documented gender-based differences in health care utilization and outcomes. The role of risk attitude in explaining the variations is limited at best. This study examines gender differences in health utilities and risk attitudes.

Methodology

Data on 13 health states were collected from 629 students via questionnaires at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in 2005. From each respondent, we assessed utilities for a subset of health states, using Time Trade-Off and Standard Gamble. A risk attitude coefficient was calculated for each respondent as a function of their utilities for all outcomes assessed. The risk coefficient derived from a closed-form utility model for men was compared to that of women using the t-statistic.

Findings

There was a statistically significant difference in the risk attitudes of men and women. Men had a concave utility function, representing risk aversion, while women had a near linear utility function, suggesting that women are risk neutral.

Practical/social implications

Differences in risk attitude may be an important contributor to gender-based disparities in health services utilization. More research is needed to assess its full impact on decision-making in health care.

Details

Preference Measurement in Health
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-029-2

Keywords

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