Association of perceived job security and chronic health conditions with retirement in older UK and US workers

Miriam Mutambudzi, Paul Flowers, Evangelia Demou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: The relationship between job insecurity, chronic health conditions (CHCs) and retirement among older workers are likely to differ between countries that have different labor markets and health and social safety nets. To date, there are no epidemiological studies that have prospectively assessed the role of job insecurity in retirement incidence, while accounting for CHC trajectories in two countries with different welfare systems. We investigated the strength of the association between baseline job insecurity and retirement incidence over an 11-year period while accounting for CHC trajectories, among workers 50-55 years of age at baseline in the UK and USA. Methods: We performed Cox proportional hazards regression analysis, using 2006-2016 data from the Health and Retirement Study (US cohort, n = 570) and English Longitudinal Study on Aging (UK cohort n = 1052). Results: Job insecurity was associated with retirement after adjusting for CHC trajectories (HR = 0.69, 95% CI = 0.50-0.95) in the UK cohort only. CHC trajectories were associated with retirement in both cohorts; however, this association was attenuated in the US cohort, but remained significant for the medium-increasing trajectory in the UK cohort (HR = 1.41, 95% CI = 1.01-1.97) after adjustment for all covariates. Full adjustment for relevant covariates attenuated the association between job insecurity and retirement indicating that CHCs, social and health factors are contributing mechanistic factors underpinning retirement incidence. Conclusions: The observed differences in the two cohorts may be driven by macro-level factors operating latently, which may affect the work environment, health outcomes and retirement decisions uniquely in different settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)52-58
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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