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Perceived Workplace Interpersonal Support Among Workers of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants Following the 2011 Accident: The Fukushima Nuclear Energy Workers’ Support (NEWS) Project Study

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  10 October 2017

Sho Takahashi
Affiliation:
Department of Disaster Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan Ibaraki Prefectural Medical Center of Psychiatry, Kasama, Japan
Jun Shigemura
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, National Defense Medical College, Tokorozawa, Japan
Yoshitomo Takahashi
Affiliation:
Department of Disaster Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan
Soichiro Nomura
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, National Defense Medical College, Tokorozawa, Japan Rokubancho Mental Clinic, Japan Depression Center, Tokyo, Japan
Aihide Yoshino
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, National Defense Medical College, Tokorozawa, Japan
Takeshi Tanigawa
Affiliation:
Department of Public Health, School of Medicine, Juntendo University, Tokyo, Japan
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Objective

The 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident was the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl. The Daiichi workers faced multiple stressors (workplace trauma, victim experiences, and public criticism deriving from their company’s post-disaster management). Literatures suggest the importance of workplace interpersonal support (WIS) in enhancing psychological health among disaster workers. We sought to elucidate the role of their demographics, disaster-related experiences, and post-traumatic stress symptoms on perceived WIS.

Methods

We analyzed self-report questionnaires of 885 workers 2-3 months post-disaster. We used sociodemographic and disaster exposure-related variables and post-traumatic stress symptoms (measured by the Impact of Event Scale-Revised) as independent variables. We asked whether WIS from colleagues, supervisors, or subordinates was perceived as helpful, and used yes or no responses as a dependent variable. Logistic regression analyses were performed to assess correlates of WIS.

Results

Of the participants, one-third (34.7%) reported WIS. WIS was associated with younger age (20-28 years [vs 49-], adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 3.25, 95% CI: 1.99-5.32), supervisory work status (aOR: 2.30, 95% CI: 1.35-3.92), and discrimination or slur experience (aOR: 1.65, 95% CI: 1.08-2.53).

Conclusions

Educational programs focusing on WIS might be beneficial to promote psychological well-being among nuclear disaster workers, especially younger workers, supervisors, and workers with discrimination experiences. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2018;12:460–463)

Type
Brief Report
Copyright
Copyright © Society for Disaster Medicine and Public Health, Inc. 2017 

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References

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Perceived Workplace Interpersonal Support Among Workers of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants Following the 2011 Accident: The Fukushima Nuclear Energy Workers’ Support (NEWS) Project Study
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