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Intra-rater reliability of the Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method (VERAM)
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Occupational and Public Health Sciences, Occupational health science. University of Gävle, Centre for Musculoskeletal Research.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2919-3921
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Occupational and Public Health Sciences, Occupational health science. University of Gävle, Centre for Musculoskeletal Research.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5055-0698
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Occupational and Public Health Sciences, Occupational health science. University of Gävle, Centre for Musculoskeletal Research.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2091-6396
The Swedish Work Environment Authority, and The Royal Institute of Technology.
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2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Visually demanding near work can cause eye discomfort, and eye and neck/shoulder discomfort during, e.g., computer work are associated. Apart from visual demands and dryness a number of environmental factors including design of the work station, lighting, glare, and the quality of the computer screen might exert an impact on eye-related symptoms. To date, there is a lack of valid and reliable instruments assessing factors associated with eye- or visual symptoms. Therefore, a new method to assess visual ergonomics at workplaces was developed in Sweden between 2014 and 2016, the Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method - VERAM. A first version of the method was drafted by the researchers mainly from existing checklists and instruments, and tested in the field by trained visual ergonomists. The method was then revised and used in the field to collect data for validity and reliability analyses. The final version of VERAM includes both a questionnaire for the employee, and an expert evaluation of the employee’s workplace. The questionnaire consists of subjective ratings in six domains: eye discomfort (frequency and intensity), musculoskeletal discomfort (frequency and intensity), ratings of visual symptoms (e.g. blurred and double vision) and ratings of the visual environment (e.g. illumination levels, glare and reflexes from a work object or a computer screen). The expert evaluation consists of both objective measurements and subjective assessments resulting in an overall expert risk assessment (no risk, low risk or high risk) of eight factors: daylight, lighting, illuminance, glare, flicker, work space, work object and work posture.

Aim: At the IEA conference 2018 the new VERAM method will be presented together with results from intra-rater reliability analyses.

Results: Intra-rater reliability was evaluated with a re-test interval of minimum two and maximum three weeks. 99 employees were included in the analyses and 32 visual ergonomists performed the corresponding expert evaluations. The Intraclass Correlations (ICC) were between 0.70 and 0.87 for the six subjective domains, and there were no significant systematic differences between the first and second rating for any of the subjective domains (rmANOVA, p > 0.05, α = 0.008). For the eight environmental factors the expert estimated the risk equally during the first and the second assessment in 69-92% of the cases, and, as seen for the subjective domains, there were no significant systematic differences for any of the eight factors (Wilcoxon sign rank test, p > 0.014, α = 0.006). To control for multiple comparisons the Bonferroni method was used.

Conclusion: The Visual Ergonomics Risk Assessment Method – VERAM showed good intra-rater reliability, both for the subjective questionnaire for the employee, and for the expert evaluation of the employee’s workplace when performed by a trained visual ergonomist.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28758OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-28758DiVA, id: diva2:1268099
Conference
IEA 2018 - The 20th Triennial Congress of the International Ergonomics Association, 26-30 August 2018, Florence, Italy
Funder
AFA Insurance, 130166Available from: 2018-12-04 Created: 2018-12-04 Last updated: 2018-12-06Bibliographically approved

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Zetterberg, CamillaHeiden, MarinaLindberg, Per

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