Workers Comp Zone


Is graveyard shift work a health risk? Are night shift workers more susceptible to accidents and illness?

As many as 15 million Americans-15% of the work force-work hours other than the day shift. There’s some evidence-though controversial-that night shift work makes accidents more likely. The World Health Organization has noted that graveyard shift work may be a risk factor for cancer. The CDC has published research onnight shift work and various maladies..

Stanford and UCSF sleep and neurology researchers are looking into the issue. Who knows? If the epidemiology results are right, perhaps there will be industrial cases making the connection. Something else for those underwriters to worry about?

Doctors-of all people-understand the problem. Any doctor who has taken night call or served marathon shifts as an intern can identify with the problems of the sleep-deprived brain. It’s hell to play with our body’s circadian rhythms.

Check out a good piece in the San Francisco Chronicle, “Night Shift” by Erin Allday: … =printable

Stay tuned.

Julius Young

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Category: Political developments