Study: Overworking killed nearly 750,000 people in a single year
Long working hours led to 745,000 deaths from stroke and heart disease in a year, a 29% increase since 2000, according to the latest estimates by the World Health Organization.
WHO, in a study done with the International Labor Organization, estimated that nearly 400,000 people died from stroke and 347,000 from heart disease as a result of working at least 55 hours a week in 2016.
"20 years, 30 years working all those hours it just catches up to you soon," says James Arata, of Hauppauge. "I never thought about it that way."
Between 2000 and 2016, the study shows that the number of deaths from heart disease due to working long hours increased by 42%, and from stroke went up by 19%.
According to the study, 72% of the reported deaths were among males. The study zeroed in on middle-aged or older workers, as the study says most of the deaths recorded were among people dying ages 60-79 who had worked for 55+ hours per week between the ages 45-74.
The study also looked at increasing numbers of people who work long hours, saying that the number of people working long hours is up to 9% globally.
The authors offered suggestions to curb overworking ailments and deaths, including governments introducing laws banning mandatory overtime and capping hours, as well as working agreements requiring flexible work hours.