IJERPH, Vol. 18, Pages 9817: Importance of the Working Environment for Early Retirement: Prospective Cohort Study with Register Follow-Up (International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health)
Background: This study investigates the role of physical work demands and psychosocial work factors for early retirement among older workers. Methods: Data from three Danish surveys on work environment and health among employed older workers (age 55–59) were merged with a national register containing information on labour market participation. Robust Poisson regression modelled the risk ratios (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for the association between physical and psychosocial work factors and early retirement, that is, not working after the age of 64. Results: Of the 2800 workers, 53% retired early. High physical work demands (RR 1.33, 95%CI 1.19–1.48), poor overall psychosocial working conditions (RR 1.43, 95%CI 1.26–1.61), and access to early retirement benefits (RR 1.79, 95%CI 1.53–2.10) predicted early retirement. Subgroup analyses revealed that poor overall psychosocial working conditions were a stronger predictor for early retirement among workers with seated jobs than those with physically active jobs. Conclusions: High physical work demands and poor psychosocial working conditions are factors that can push older workers out of the labour market prematurely. Poor psychosocial working conditions seem to be a particularly strong push factor among workers with seated work.