Landscaping work: work-related musculoskeletal problems and ergonomic risk factors

Mei, Ching Lim and Khamisah Awang Lukman and Nelbon Giloi and Jac Fang Lim and Hazeqa Salleh and Ahmad Syukri Radzran and Mohammad Saffree Jeffree and Syed Sharizman Syed Abdul Rahim (2021) Landscaping work: work-related musculoskeletal problems and ergonomic risk factors. Risk Management and Healthcare Policy, 14. pp. 3411-3421. ISSN 1179-1594

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Background: Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WRMSDs) are considered one of the foremost reason of disability globally with significant economic impact due to loss of productivity. Landscaping work is considered a high-risk industry in the service sector. Landscape workers are susceptible to WRMSDs as they are exposed to high physical demands at work, and exert significant physical effort to complete daily repetitive tasks during long working hours. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of WRMSDs and to identify the ergonomic risk factors among landscape workers in a university setting. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study conducted among landscape workers at a public university in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. Interviews were conducted due to low literacy of the participants, using structured questionnaires which consist of personal characteristics, work descriptions, ergonomic risk factors, as well as self-reported WRMSD symptoms using NORDIC questionnaire. Ergonomic risk assessment (ERA) using rapid entire body assessment (REBA) was then conducted. Results: Fifty-five of 60 landscape workers agreed to participate (92% response rate). The overall prevalence of WRMSDs among landscape workers was 85.5%. The highest prevalence involving the shoulder (65.5%), followed by neck (23.6%), wrist/hand (23.6%), and lower back (20.0%) regions based on their self-reported WRMSD symptoms over the past 12 months. Awkward posture was the risk factor identified through ergonomic risk assessment (ERA) conducted by ERA trained personnel. None of the working postures during assessment was noted to be appropriate. Although no significant difference was associated with self-reported WRMSDs, majority of the landscape workers (71%) were classified as medium ergonomic risk group using REBA, with the remaining 29% considered to be high ergonomic risk group. Conclusion: Improvement in awareness campaigns, modification of working tools, and enhanced administrative approaches are among the control and prevention measures recommended to delay or prevent the occurrence of WRMSDs.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Awkward posture , Landscape workers , Work-related musculoskeletal disorders , Rapid entire body assessment , REBA
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC31-1245 Internal medicine > RC581-951 Specialties of internal medicine > RC925-935 Diseases of the musculoskeletal system
S Agriculture > SB Plant culture > SB1-1110 Plant culture > SB450.9-467.8 Gardens and gardening
Divisions: FACULTY > Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Depositing User: SAFRUDIN BIN DARUN -
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2022 16:51
Last Modified: 30 Mar 2022 16:51

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