Objective: To examine, in a non-clinical sample, the association of psychopathology, personality, sociodemographic information, and psychosocial indicators of non-occupational functioning with the duration of absence from work in the past 12 months.
Method: A longitudinal community cohort of 591 adults from Switzerland was analyzed using multilevel ordered logistic regression, with several alternative models as robustness checks. Psychopathology was assessed using the total score (Global Severity Index) of the Symptom Check List-90 Revised.
Results: The highest psychopathology levels were associated with absences of 3 or more week duration, largely independently of age. Extraversion and being divorced, widowed or separated also corresponded with longer absences from work in some analyses. No effect of sex was found. Most effects tested were not statistically significant and estimates showed large uncertainty.
Conclusion: Although tentative, our results suggest a possible influence of psychopathology on work participation. It may thus be desirable in insurance-medical appraisals of work ability to include instruments for measuring psychopathology.