Injury Mechanisms and Factors Associated with Occupational Injuries among Building Construction Workers in Kampala City, Uganda, 2016

  • Occupational and environmental health
  • Injury
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Background: Globally, about 1,000 people die and close to 860,000 people sustain injury or ill health at work daily leading to death, productivity loss or disability. In 2014, injury incidence rate and fatality rate for Kampala were estimated at 4,248 and 92 per 100,000workers respectively. Though injury prevention and control requires contextual evidence, most studies in Uganda have focused on general causes but not the association of different factors. We assessed the injury mechanisms and association of individual, work environment and behavioural factors with occupational injuries among building construction workers.
Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study among building construction workers aged 18 years and above in Kampala city during April-May 2016. We used a standardized semi- structured questionnaire in interviews. Data were analyzed by generalized linear modeling in Stata 12 which yielded crude and adjusted prevalence ratios (aPR) at p<0.05 and 95% Confidence Interval (CI). All variables with p≤0.2 at bi-variate analysiswere considered for multivariate analysis.
Results: We interviewed 318 respondents from 57 construction sites. The respondents’ mean age was 28.2 and ±7.0 standard deviation. 103 (32.4%) of the respondents experienced injuries in the last six months prior to the study mostly (68.9%) during night duty. Among the injured, 28 (27.2%) were cut by sharp objects, 19 (18.4%) pierced by construction materials/equipment, 18 (17.5%) hit by falling objects, while others either fell from height, electrocuted, held between objects or hit by colleagues. After adjustment, daily income <$7.5 (aPR:0.55, CI:0.39- 0.78); perceived poor safety environment (aPR:1.5, CI:1.10-2.04); job dissatisfaction (aPR:1.64, CI:1.20-2.27); and job stress (aPR:1.66, CI:1.12-2.35) were significantly associated with occupational injuries.
Conclusion: There was a high prevalence of occupational injuries. Daily income <$7.5, job dissatisfaction, job stress, and perceived poor safety environment were significantly occupational injuries. We recommend a comprehensive occupational injury prevention and control approach integrating education, psychosocial support, legislation enforcement and advocacy.

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