2023 Volume 5 Issue 1 Article ID: 2022-0010-OA
Objectives: This study examined the relationship of potential advisors — human resources or services that advise workers when they experience health issues that affect their work and work-related health — with psychological distress and analyzed which human resources have a greater impact on improving workers’ mental health. Methods: An Internet-based survey using a self-administered questionnaire was conducted. The target population was workers between the ages of 20 and 69 years. Among a total of 5,111 participants, 4,540 were included in the present analysis. Participants were asked questions regarding potential advisors on work-related health issues. The Kessler 6-item Psychological Distress Scale (K6) was used to assess psychological distress. We used a generalized linear model with a binomial response for assessing the relationship between K6 scores and each potential advisor on work-related health issues. Results: Participants without potential advisors on work-related health issues were significantly more likely to score both K6 ≥5 (cutoff for mild psychological distress) and K6 ≥13 (cutoff for severe psychological distress) than the participants with potential advisors (all p<0.001). The participants for whom a supervisor was the potential advisor on work-related health issues were significantly less likely to score K6 ≥13 than their counterparts (p=0.005). Those for whom an occupational physician or family members was the potential advisor on work-related health issues were significantly less likely to score K6 ≥5 than their counterparts (p=0.011 and p=0.001, respectively). Conclusions: Having potential advisors could be important for workers’ mental health improvement. Specifically, having supervisors, occupational physicians, or family members as potential advisors may be effective in reducing workers’ psychological distress.