The Associations Between Falls, Fall Injuries, and Labor Market Outcomes Among U.S. Workers 65 Years and Older
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OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to examine whether falls are associated with the subsequent ability to work among workers aged 65 years and older. METHODS: This longitudinal cohort study followed older workers enrolled in the Health and Retirement Study. Outcomes included time to health-related work limitation and to labor force exit. RESULTS: After adjustment, multiple falls with or without a medically treated injury were associated with time to limitation [hazard ratio (HR) = 1.77, 95% confidence interval (95% CI): 1.30 to 2.40; HR = 1.48, 95% CI: 1.26 to 1.73, respectively]. Adjustment mitigated a crude relationship between falls and time to exit. Significant interactions suggest that the relationship between falls and labor force exit depends on age, race, and job demands. CONCLUSION: Falls, both noninjurious and injurious, are associated with subsequent health-related work limitation among workers aged 65 years and older. Fall prevention activities would benefit workers who want or need to keep working past age 65.
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