Association of working shifts, inside and outside of healthcare, with risk of severe COVID-19: An observational study
About 10 X higher risk of COVID-19 if Dark-Skinned Health Care Worker is on Night Shift
vs white non-health care worker on day shift
A.V. Rowlands, PhD1,2 alex.rowlands at le.ac.uk, C. Gillies PhD3, Y. Chudasama PhD3, M.J. Davies MD1,2, N. Islam PhD5, D.E. Kloecker MPhil1,3,6, C. Lawson PhD3, M. Pareek PhD7, C. Razieh MSc1,2, F. Zaccardi PhD1,3, *T. Yates PhD1,2, *K. Khunti PhD1,3,4 *Joint senior authors
Background: Health and key workers are at an increased risk of developing severe COVID-19; it is not known, however, if this risk is exacerbated in those with irregular work patterns. We aimed to investigate the risk of severe COVID-19 in health and shift workers.
Methods: We included UK Biobank participants in employment or self-employed at baseline and with linked COVID-19 data to 31st August 2020. Participants were grouped as neither a health worker nor shift worker (reference category), health worker only, shift worker only, or both, and associations with severe COVID-19 investigated in logistic regressions.
Findings: Of 235,685 participants (81.5% neither health nor shift worker, 1.4% health worker only, 16.9% shift worker only, and 0.3% both), there were 580 (0.25%) cases of severe COVID-19.
The risk of severe COVID-19 was higher in
- health workers (adjusted odds ratio: 2.32 [95% CI: 1.33, .05];
- shift workers (2.06 [1.72, 2.47]); and in
- health workers who worked shifts (7.56 [3.86, 14.79]).
Being both a health worker and a shift worker had a possible greater impact on the risk severe COVID-19 in South Asian and Black and African Caribbean ethnicities compared to White individuals.
Interpretation: Both health and shift work were independently associated with over twice the risk of severe COVID-19; the risk was over seven times higher in health workers who work shifts. Vaccinations, therapeutic and preventative options should take into consideration not only health and key worker status but also shift worker status.
Note: "Vitamin D" not occur once in the PDF
Note: Previous Biobank studies of Vitamin D had mistakenly assumed that Vitamin D measurements from up to 10 years before COVID-19 would still be correct. This study does not appear to have that time-lag problem.
- Shiftwork diseases are often due to lack of vitamin D
- Shift workers 2X more likely to get COVID-19 (low Vitamin D) - Dec 2020
- Reduced Vitamin D status in rotating shift workers in the summer and fall – April 2020
- Shift workers have low vitamin D, poorer sleep, and are more depressed – March 2019
- Employers should give night shift workers free vitamin D – GMB Union June 2019
- Miscarriage 32 percent more likely if work night shift (probably low Vitamin D) – April 2019
- Shiftworkers and Indoor Workers have lower Vitamin D levels – review of 10 studies Sept 2018
- Night cleaners deficient in vitamin D - Nov 2015
- 40 percent lower vitamin D level if work other shifts (Italy) – June 2015
- Night shift workers far more likely to have low vitamin D levels – May 2016
- Allergies and low vitamin D strongly associated with night shift bakers– Sept 2014
- Working other than dayshift reduces vitamin D levels and Bone Mineral Density and increases bone pain – Aug 2013
- Shift workers 23 percent more likely to have cardiovascular events – meta-analysis July 2012
- Shift work increases breast cancer risk by 22 percent (Vitamin D is 1 of 5 possible ways) – Oct 2013
As of Oct 4, 2023, the VitaminDWiki COVID page had: 19 trial results, 37 meta-analyses and reviews, Mortality studies see related: Governments, HealthProblems, Hospitals, Dark Skins, All 26 COVID risk factors are associated with low Vit D, Fight COVID-19 with 50K Vit D weekly Vaccines Take lots of Vitamin D at first signs of COVID 166 COVID Clinical Trials using Vitamin D (Aug 2023) Prevent a COVID death: 9 dollars of Vitamin D or 900,000 dollars of vaccine - Aug 2023
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