Long working hours killing thousands of people a year, study finds

A study conducted by the World Health Organisation (WHO) found that long working hours are killing thousands of people a year.

The study showed that 745,000 people died in 2016 from stroke and heart disease due to long hours. It found that people living in South East Asia and the Western Pacific region were the most affected.

The research found that people who work 55 hours or more a week have a 35 per cent higher risk of stroke and a 17 per cent higher risk of dying from heart disease, compared with a week of 35 to 40 hours.

And its expected to get worse due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The number of people working long hours is increasing, and currently stands at 9 per cent of the total population globally.  This trend puts even more people at risk of work-related disability and early death.

The study also showed almost three-quarters of those that died as a result of working long hours were middle-aged or older men.

Often, the deaths occurred much later in life, sometimes decades later, than the long hours were worked.

The study was conducted with the International Labour Organisation and is the first study of its kind done globally.