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Int J Public Health. 2017 Mar;62(2):209-218. doi: 10.1007/s00038-016-0871-3. Epub 2016 Aug 29.

Informal employment, unpaid care work, and health status in Spanish-speaking Central American countries: a gender-based approach.

Lopez-Ruiz M1,2,3,4, Benavides FG5,6,7, Vives A8, Artazcoz L5,6,9,10.

Author information

1
CIBER Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Madrid, Spain. maria.lopez@upf.edu.
2
Center for Research in Occupational Health, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain. maria.lopez@upf.edu.
3
IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain. maria.lopez@upf.edu.
4
Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales, Salamanca, Spain. maria.lopez@upf.edu.
5
CIBER Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Madrid, Spain.
6
Center for Research in Occupational Health, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain.
7
IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute), Barcelona, Spain.
8
Department of Public Health, School of Medicine, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, CEDEUS (Conicyt/Fondap/15110020), ACCDiS (Conicyt/Fondap/15130011), Santiago de Chile, Chile.
9
Agència de Salut Pública de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.
10
Institute of Biomedical Research (IIB-Sant Pau), Barcelona, Spain.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To assess the relationship between paid work, family characteristics and health status in Central American workers; and to examine whether patterns of association differ by gender and informal or formal employment.

METHODS:

Cross-sectional study of 8680 non-agricultural workers, based on the First Central American Survey of Working Conditions and Health (2011). Main explicative variables were paid working hours, marital status, caring for children, and caring for people with functional diversity or ill. Using Poisson regression models, adjusted prevalence ratios of poor self-perceived and mental health were calculated by sex and social security coverage (proxy of informal employment).

RESULTS:

A clear pattern of association was observed for women in informal employment who were previously married, had care responsibilities, long working hours, or part-time work for both self-perceived and mental health. No other patterns were found.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our results show health inequalities related to unpaid care work and paid work that depend on the interaction between gender and informal employment. To reduce these inequalities suitable policies should consider both the labor (increasing social security coverage) and domestic spheres (co-responsibility of care).

KEYWORDS:

Care; Central America; Family characteristics; Gender; Informal employment; Social factors

PMID:
27572494
DOI:
10.1007/s00038-016-0871-3
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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