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The influence of sick building syndrome on self-reported productivity and work disruption amongst office employees in two buildings in South Africa

K. Heslop, 2003
hot climate | office building | sick building syndrome
Bibliographic info: Healthy Buildings 2003 - Proceedings 7th International Conference (7th-11th December 2003) - National University of Singapore - Vol. 3, pp 287-292, 4 Fig., 3 Tab., 9 Ref.
Languages: English

The aim of this quasi-experimental research was to investigate the influence of buildingrelated symptoms on self-reported productivity and work disruption based on a randomsample comprising 348 employees. The investigations were carried out in two air-conditioned,high rise office buildings located in South Africa. Respondents self-reported productivity wasassessed by their own ratings of how frequently symptoms reduced their ability to work andcaused them to leave work early or stay at home. In addition, work disruption due to sickbuilding syndrome (SBS) symptoms was determined. Results indicate there was a significantrelationship between self-reported productivity and the number of SBS symptoms in bothbuildings (p < 0.05). In essence, the greater the number of symptoms reported by respondents,the greater was the corresponding reduction in productivity. Moreover, significant differenceswere found between the buildings in terms of self-reported productivity. Work disruptionattributed to SBS symptoms was consistently higher in building B. In building A, more thanone-third of the employees (37%) reported that symptoms reduced their ability to worksometimes, often or always, while the corresponding figure for building B was 55%.


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