|Year : 2014 | Volume
| Issue : 1 | Page : 15-17
Prevalence of stress level among Bank employees in urban Puducherry, India
S Ganesh Kumar, N Deivanai Sundaram
Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India
|Date of Web Publication||18-Nov-2014|
S Ganesh Kumar
Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry - 605 006
Source of Support: This study was a part of the project funded by
Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) under STS (Reference ID:
2012-01585)., Conflict of Interest: None
| Abstract|| |
Background and Objective: Stress is an important health area of concern among bank employees. The study aims to assess the stress level and its associated factors among bank employees. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 192 bank employees in urban Puducherry, India. Stress level was assessed by Cohen's Perceived Stress scale and classified into low (0-11), average (12-15), high (16-20), and very high (21 and above) based on the stress scores. Collected data were analyzed by using univariate analysis. Results: Majority of them had high and very high level of stress (75.5%, confidence interval: 69.4-81.6%). The variables that include age group, sex, category of work, smoking and alcohol use were not found to be significantly associated with the stress level (P > 0.05). With respect to question items, handling personal problems and things were going their way were answered as fairly often and very often by the majority of the subjects. Conclusion: Stress level among bank employees is high, which necessitates intervention measures for this vulnerable group.
Keywords: Bank employees, India, prevalence, stress level
|How to cite this article:|
Kumar S G, Sundaram N D. Prevalence of stress level among Bank employees in urban Puducherry, India. Ind Psychiatry J 2014;23:15-7
Bank employees belong to special workgroup who undergo varying levels of mental stress in the workplace. There is evidence that long-term mental stress associated with chronic diseases among bank employees. , Bank employees cannot afford the time to relax and they are faced with work variety, discrimination, favoritism, delegation, and conflicting tasks. The association of substance use such as alcohol and smoking among employees were found to play a significant role in determining the levels of occupational stress. ,
Very few studies have been conducted at the global level to assess the stress level among Bank employees ,,, and in India. , Hence, such a study group has been chosen as the target of this study. A study of such nature will be helpful to understand the problem of stress level and its associated factors, so that appropriate interventions can be initiated for the benefit of such a vulnerable group. With this background, the study was conducted to assess the stress level among the bank employees of urban Puducherry.
| Materials and methods|| |
This cross-sectional study was conducted in 12 banks in urban Puducherry in July-August, 2012. Approval was obtained from the Institute Ethics Committee before the commencement of the study. Considering prevalence of stress level as 60% and relative precision at 12% level, minimum required sample size was found to be 185. 
At the first step, all the nationalized banks in urban Puducherry were listed. Banks were selected by simple random technique. All the employees including managerial, official and clerical staff of the selected bank were included in this study. Thus, a total of 192 subjects from 12 nationalized banks were included in this study.
Prior permission was obtained from the concerned bank managers before initiating the study. After obtaining informed consent from the subject, the questionnaire was given for self-administration for baseline characteristics and risk factors. Stress level was assessed by Cohen's Perceived Stress scale  and classified into low (0-11), average (12-15), high (16-20) and very high (21 and above) based on the stress scores. Current daily smokers were defined as those who reported smoking at least one cigarette or beedi/day. The subjects with a minimum of 30 ml of 40-50% alcohol at least 3 times a week were considered as alcohol user. The collected data was entered in Statistical Package for Social Sciences ( SPSS version 19: IBM-PASW statistics). It was analyzed by using univariate analysis. P <0.05 is considered to be statistically significant.
| Results|| |
All the 192 respondents were participated in the study. There were 128 (66.7%) males and 64 (33.3%) females in the study population. About 1/3 of them belonged to age group of 30-40 years (30%). Overall, majority of them had high and very high level of stress (75.5%, confidence interval [CI]: 69.4-81.6%). Proportion of subjects in each category of stress level and its 95% CI is given in [Table 1]. The variables that include age group, sex, category of work, smoking and alcohol use were not found to be significantly associated with stress level [Table 2].
|Table 2: Stress level according to associated factors among bank employees |
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With respect to question items, "handling personal problems" and "things were going your way" were answered with majority of them responding with fairly often and very often choices. About nearly half of the subjects felt that sometimes they are nervous and stressed, and could not cope with all the things that they had to do [Table 3].
|Table 3: Questionnaire item analysis of the stress level among bank employees |
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| Discussion|| |
This study found that majority of the bank employees had high and very high stress levels which is a matter of concern. Various studies in different parts highlighted that the stress and its effects is an important health issue among bank professionals. ,,,, A recent study reported that 60% of bank employees had high and very high stress level, which is marginally lesser than our study.  The difference in findings in different studies may be result of difference in methodology adopted, instrument used for assessment, areas selected, work place environment along with definitions used in the analysis.
The causes for stress among bank employees are many. Demographic factors, category of work, smoking and alcohol use were not found to be associated with stress in our study. But it was found that certain questions like "handling personal problems" and "things were going your way" were felt fairly often and very often by the subjects. Eighty percent of stress is invited by us. Twenty percent of stress could be genuine like suffering from incurable disease or pain, disasters, death in the family, accidents, rape, nongratification of libido and other such issues over which we have no direct control. 
Banking sector has undergone an intense restructuring process across the world and taken a leading position in the incorporation of new technologies and organizational innovations. Computerization in the industry, in association with forms of work organization, has resulted in changes that reflect on the workers' health.  Long hours of work, dealing with different situations, interpersonal relationship within workplace and people along with or without their family and personal problems will lead to stress.
We could not assess certain risk factors like psychological and social problems that lead to stress. Psychosocial stress occurs when job demands are high and job decision latitude is low.  Since the study is a cross sectional and evaluated based on the subjective nature, it may vary in different settings. In spite of these limitations, the study gives valuable information on the magnitude of the problem in this vulnerable group. It is recommended that regular personal management techniques for the bank employees to tackle the stress are required at regional level.
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[Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3]