In 2003, the state-specific prevalence of AAWL among working-age adults ranged from 3.4% (Hawaii) to 15.0% (Kentucky) (median among states: 6.7%) (Table).
Among all 50 states and DC, the median percentage employed was 73.2% (range: 60.6% [West Virginia] to 82.0% [South Dakota]) for the overall working-age population (Figure) but was consistently lower for those with doctor-diagnosed arthritis (median among states: 64.3%; range: 47.6% [Kentucky] to 77.1% [South Dakota]) and lower still among those with AAWL (median among states: 48.7%; range: 32.9% [Kentucky] to 67.7% [South Dakota]).
Editorial Note: This report provides the first state-specific prevalence estimates of AAWL among working-age adults.
Second, the AAWL question encompassed three work factors (i.e., whether persons are able to work, the type of work they do, and the amount of work they do); the analysis could not examine the independent associations of AAWL and each work factor.
Physical impairments, such as pain and activity limitations, might underlie AAWL by interfering with the ability of a person to perform work-related tasks and therefore constitute substantial disability.
Although the content of these programs is not work-specific, they have been demonstrated to be effective in reducing physical and functional limitations, decreasing pain, and delaying disability attributed to arthritis (6), which might contribute to AAWL. Also, because these programs are designed for community-based implementation, they are feasible for worksite health-promotion programs.
population (4), suggesting a corresponding increase in AAWL and effects on employment.