Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

15 Percent Work Under Influence of Alcohol

10.01.2006


Workplace alcohol use and impairment directly affects an estimated 15 percent of the U.S. workforce, or 19.2 million workers, according to a recent study conducted at the University at Buffalo’s Research Institute on Addictions (RIA) and reported in the current issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol.



Information about workplace alcohol use and impairment during the previous 12 months was obtained by telephone interviews from 2,805 employed adults residing in the 48 contiguous states and the District of Columbia. The sample of participants was designed to reflect the demographic composition of the adult civilian U.S. workforce from ages 18-65.

Interviews were conducted from January 2002 to June 2003. Those interviewed were asked how often during the previous year they drank alcohol within two hours of reporting to work, drank during the workday, worked under the influence or worked with a hangover.


This is the first study of workplace alcohol use to utilize a representative probability sample of the U.S. workforce.

Based on those responses, Michael R. Frone, Ph.D., principal investigator on the study, estimates that 2.3 million workers (1.8 percent of the workforce) have consumed alcohol at least once before coming to work and 8.9 million workers (7.1 percent of the workforce) have drank alcohol at least once during the workday. Most workers who drink during the workday do so during lunch breaks, though some drink while working or during other breaks.

Frone, research associate professor in Department of Psychology in the UB College of Arts and Sciences, estimates that 2.1 million workers (1.7 percent of the workforce) worked under the influence of alcohol and 11.6 million workers (9.2 percent of the workforce) worked with a hangover.

Nonetheless, the study, funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, suggests that most workplace alcohol use and impairment does not occur frequently. Among those employees who report drinking before work, 71 percent reported doing so less than monthly, 25 percent

monthly, and only four percent, weekly. For those who drank during the workday, 62 percent did so less than monthly, 24 percent monthly, and 14 percent weekly.

The study found that workplace alcohol use and impairment was more prevalent among men compared to women. Also, working under the influence of alcohol or with a hangover was more prevalent among younger workers compared to older workers and among unmarried workers compared to married workers.

Among the broad occupation groups showing the highest rates of workplace alcohol use and impairment were the management occupations, sales occupations, arts/entertainment/sports/media occupations, food preparation and serving occupations, and building and grounds maintenance occupations.

Workers on the evening shift and night shift and those working a nonstandard shift involving irregular or flexible work hours were more likely to report drinking before coming to work compared to workers on a regular day shift. Those working a nonstandard shift were also more likely to use alcohol during the workday and report being at work under the influence of alcohol.

Prior to this study, very little data existed on the prevalence, frequency and distribution of alcohol use and impairment at the workplace.

A primary goal of the study was to inform managers, policymakers, and researchers so that all stakeholders have a better understanding of the extent of alcohol use and impairment in the workplace when formulating policy and exploring causes and outcomes.

"Of all psychoactive substances with the potential to impair cognitive and behavioral performance, alcohol is the most widely used and misused substance in the general population and in the workforce," Frone stated. "The misuse of alcohol by employed adults is an important social policy issue with the potential to undermine employee productivity and safety."

Frone contends that the impact of employee alcohol use on productivity and safety may not be understood until closer attention is paid to the context in which drinking occurs. "The context of alcohol use -- off the job vs. on the job -- is important to an understanding of the productivity implications (job attendance vs. job performance and safety) of that use," he explained.

The Research Institute on Addictions has been a leader in the study of addictions since 1970 and a research center of the University at Buffalo since 1999.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, the largest and most comprehensive campus in the State University of New York.

Kathleen Weaver | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.buffalo.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

nachricht Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study
30.03.2017 | Rochester Institute of Technology

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

Im Focus: Quantum-physical Model System

Computer-assisted methods aid Heidelberg physicists in reproducing experiment with ultracold atoms

Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...

Im Focus: Glacier bacteria’s contribution to carbon cycling

Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.

A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New quantum liquid crystals may play role in future of computers

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A promising target for kidney fibrosis

21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine

Light rays from a supernova bent by the curvature of space-time around a galaxy

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>