78% of Corporate Employees Afflicted to Sleep Disorder: ASSOCHAM

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INDIACSR News Network

NEW DELHI: Due to demanding schedules and high stress levels, nearly 78% of the corporate employees sleep less than 6 hours on a daily basis which leads to sleep disorders amongst them, according to a recent survey conducted by ASSOCHAM on the occasion of ‘World Health day’.

While releasing the ASSOCHAM survey its Secretary General, Mr. D S Rawat said, “Loss of sleep has wide ranging effects including daytime fatigue, physical discomfort, psychological stress, performance deterioration, low-pain threshold and increase absenteeism”. The survey also shows that women experience more sleep problems than men. More than half of women said they frequently experience a sleep problem.

Around 55 per cent of the survey respondents fall under the age bracket of 20-29 years, followed by 30-39 years (26 per cent), 40-49 years (16 per cent), 50-59 years (2 per cent) and 60-69 years (approximately 1 per cent).
The report included the major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Hyderabd, Pune, Chandigarh, Dehradun etc. A little over 200 employee were selected from each city on an average. Delhi ranks first afflicted to insomnia followed by Mumbai (2nd), Ahemdabad (3rd) Chandigarh (4th), Hyderbad (5th ), Pune (6th ) and Chennai (7th).

The survey was able to target corporate employees from 18 broad sectors, with maximum share contributed by employees from IT/ITes sector (17 per cent).

* Others include employees from those sectors that have contributed >= 1 per cent share in the survey (consumer durable, construction, energy, healthcare, steel, HR and Misc)

Employees working in engineering and telecom sector contributed 9 per cent and 8 per cent respectively in the questionnaire. Nearly 6 per cent of the employees belonged from market research/KPO and media background each. Management, FMCG and Infrastructure sector employees share is 5 per cent each, in the total survey. Respondents from power and real estate sector contributed 4 per cent each. Employees from education and food& beverages sector provided a share of 3 per cent each. Advertising, manufacturing and textiles employees offered a share of 2 per cent each in the survey results.

As per ASSOCHAM’S corporate employees’ survey result, 36 per cent of the sample population are also suffering from obesity. It is found that obesity alone can modify occupational morbidity,mortality and injury risks that can further affect workplaceabsence, disability, productivity and healthcare costs. Depression is the third hard hit disease that was observed among the respondents, with 21 per cent of the sample corporate employees suffering this lifestyle disease. High blood pressure (B.P) and diabetes are the fourth and fifth largest disease with a share of 12 per cent and 8 per cent respectively as suffered among the corporate employees.

Spondolysis (5.5 per cent), heart disease (4 per cent), cervical (3.0 per cent), asthma (2.5 per cent), slip disk (2 per cent) and arthritis (1 per cent) are the diseases that are mostly suffered by corporate employees.

In terms of the physical fitness, it was found that around 47 per cent of the corporate employees say that they ‘do not exercise’, 23 per cent do physical workout devoting less than 1 hour/week, 15 per cent of the employees exercise for 1-3 hours/week, 8 per cent of employees exercise for 3-6 hours/week and merely 7 per cent stay fit by exercising for more than 6 hours/week.

The paper indicates that dedicated workout (exercise) can delay or prevent diabetes, some cancers and heart problems. It even reduces feelings of depression and anxiety. However, lack of exercise may increase risk factor for developing headaches.

Nearly 38 per cent of corporate employees took sick leaves in the range of 1-7 days. The absenteeism was mainly owing to acute disease like influenza, cold & flu, fever (including malaria, viral and dengue), severe headaches. Around 12 per cent were absent from workplace in the range of 8-15 days and 6 per cent and 5 per cent of the employees were on leave in the range of 31-100 days and above 100 days respectively. In this category employees suffering with severe acute and chronic diseases like minor paralytic attack, acute liver and kidney disease, skin disease, stroke, heart disease, disk slip are included.

Absenteeism from work due to health condition
{December 2011-March 2012}

Health condition                          Respondents Share (in %)
Cold & Cough/ Influenza                   28.00
Fever                                                 26.00
High B.P                                           13.00
Depression                                        8.00
Stress                                                   7.00
High Diabetes                                   7.00
Others*                                             11.00

* Others include: Disk slip, heart disease, stroke, minor paralytic attack, skin disease, chronic liver disease, stomach disease, conjunctivitis

As per the results it was found that maximum number of employees (28 per cent) were absent from work due to influenza/cold & cough, 26 per cent were on leave due to fever (including, malaria, viral, dengue), 13 per cent of employees suffered high B.P that forced them to be absent from workplace, 8 per cent and 7 per cent of the employees were absent due to depression and stress respectively and 7 per cent took leave from workplace due to their diabetic conditions.

ASSOCHAM’s healthcare survey further reveals that 41 per cent of employees spend in the range of Rs.500-5000 on health care in a financial year. Over 36 per cent of the survey respondents say that they spend less than Rs. 500 on their health expenditure in a year. 21 per cent of the employee’s health expenditure ranged between Rs. 5,000-50000, as they suffered from diabetes, acute liver disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure and stroke. Merely 2 per cent of the employees spend more than Rs. 50,000 due to heart disease/cardiovascular disease, paralytic attack, surgery.

Mr. Rawat further said that taking up corporate wellness program improves chronic and lifestyle diseases of India Inc. This will add to country’s national income up to USD 17.74 billion in 2014-15 through a reduction in absenteeism rate by 1.00 percent.

The benefits of a workplace wellness program reduce absenteeism, improve presenteeism, Control/reduces escalating health care costs, improve productivity, increases employee loyalty and reduces attrition rate, employees leading healthy lifestyles tend to take lower sick leaves with improved work performance and increased productivity that reduces overall costs of the organisation.

ASSOCHAM also observed that out of the top 500 Indian companies that are working towards corporate social responsibility (CSR), offer healthcare programs and facilities in nearby areas where their factory outlets are located and many are serving in rural blocks/districts/village. But ironically 42 per cent of them ignore employee health care as they do not offer any wellness program to them.

There are a number of physical and psychological factors that increase the risk of insomnia are

Lifestyle factors (e.g., poor sleep habits, excessive caffeine use)
Environmental conditions (e.g., noise, extreme temperatures)
Circadian system disruptions (e.g., shift work)
Mental health disorders (depression, substance abuse)
Medical disorders (e.g., hyperthyroidism, cardiovascular conditions, joint and low back pain)
Neurological disorders (e.g., Parkinson’s and Alzheimers’ disease)
Other sleep disorders (e.g., obstructive sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome)
Stress (interpersonal, occupational, financial)
Medication use, side effects, and discontinuation

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