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OBJECTIVES: Health and job satisfaction are key independent determinants of ability to work to older ages. We investigated the interaction of these two important factors on health-related job loss (HRJL) over 2 years of follow-up comparing male and female older workers. METHODS: A population sample of adults aged 50-64 years, recruited from 24 English general practices in the Health and Employment After Fifty (HEAF) study, completed questionnaires at baseline with follow-ups at 12 and 24 months. Multiple-record Cox proportional hazards models were performed to explore the main effects of, and potential interactions between, job satisfaction and self-rated health (SRH) as predictors of time to first HRJL. RESULTS: Of the initial 8134 participants, 5143 were ever in work in the study period. Among men, 5.7% and 14.3% reported job dissatisfaction (those in good and poor SRH, respectively), while among women these percentages were 4.6 and 12.9. HRJL was reported by 106 men and 176 women. Men in good health dissatisfied with their job had a sixfold (HR=6.4; 95% CI 3.3 to 12.4) increased risk of HRJL compared with men satisfied with their job (significant multiplicative interaction). Women dissatisfied with their job were more likely to have an HRJL within 2 years of follow-up irrespective of their SRH. CONCLUSIONS: SRH and job dissatisfaction have important individual effects on the risk of stopping work for health among older workers. These findings point to the importance of job satisfaction in reducing health-related exit from paid work among older workers.

Original publication




Journal article


Occup environ med

Publication Date



ageing, fitness for work, musculoskeletal, retired