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Current Affairs

Long working hours lead to more deaths

Date: 20 May 2021 Tags: Reports & Indices


A study by World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) has found out that large number of workers died due to long working hours in harsh conditions.



Various studies have tried to ascertain rights and quality of work but it is for the first time that a study was conducted to understand effects of long working hours on workers.



  • The pandemic has given rise to new challenges that also included long working hours. The number of people working long hours has increased work-related disability and early death.

  • The number of people dead due to heat stroke and heart-related ailments as a result of long working hours was 3.98 lakh and 3.47 lakh respectively.

  • People dying due to stroke and heart disease as a result of long working hours increased by 19% and 42% between 2000 and 2016.

  • Older and middle-aged men living in the Western Pacific and South-East Asia regions were the most affected due to work-related disease.

  • People who worked for 55 hours or more between the age of 45 and 74 years were the most significant ones dying.


Recent challenges

  • The work from home regime during the pandemic blurred the line between work place and home. Employees were forced to spend more time working in comparison to pre-pandemic time.

  • Business and smaller enterprises force their employees to work longer hours as they have reduced their operations and strength has been cut.