The objective of the study is to determine the contribution of employment status, occupation and work situation to women's health as they pass through different life stages, and to identify the factors which modify any observed relationships. The study builds on work completed and in progress under an NIA New Investigator Award. The investigation employs a longitudinal design and follows the population over a fifteen year period. The study uses social. sociopsychological, and demographic data from a household interview survey conducted in 1970-71, two interim mail surveys (1975 and 1980) and a 1984-85 mail follow-up survey, and computerized medical record data beginning three years prior to the 1970-71 survey and continuing to the present. Having data on and about employment over an extended time period along with health status and detailed medical record data provides a rare opportunity to explore the research questions. The primary objectives of the study are: 1. To assess the relationship between employment history and health status changes over a fifteen year period; 2. To identify the variables which modify the relationships between health status and employment history and characteristics; 3. To determine the variables which are related to health status among women employed during the study period. Among the variables to be examined are occupational status, social support and integration gained through work, intrinsic job characteristics, and intermittency of labor force participation. The significance of the proposed project is that it will test many of the hypotheses suggested by the literature on women,s employment and health. The study population comprises 744 women categorized into the following groups: Group 1: women who in 1970-71 were between the ages of 19 and 32, and at the end of the study period (1984-85) were moving into early midlife (210); Group 2: Women who in 1970-71 were between the ages of 33 and 52 and at the end of the study period were moving into later midlife (N-3791); and Group 3: Women who in 1970-71 were between the ages of 51 and 64, and at the end of the study period were moving into later life (N-155). The analysis is carried out both within and across age groups. The analyses will begin with simple cross-sectional bivariate approaches and move to multivariate longitudinal methods such as analysis of variance with repeated measures, path analysis and logistic regression.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Research Project (R01)
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Human Development and Aging Subcommittee 1 (HUD)
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Kaiser Foundation Research Institute
United States
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