Health and Fitness

This Website Developed by UP Researchers Shows Just How Risky Your Job Is During the Pandemic

It profiles job risks from a variety of sectors and industries.
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Researchers from the University of the Philippines have created a data analytics site that estimates the risk levels of people to contract the coronavirus depending on their jobs or profession. 

Developed by a team from the UP COVID-19 Pandemic Response and the UP-Los Baños Biomathematics Initiative, the site lists nearly 1,000 jobs, their corresponding industrial sector, and even their average monthly income and identifies which ones are most at risk not just of becoming sick, but of spreading COVID-19 because of their potential exposure to the disease and physical proximity to others.

According to the site’s definition of terms, “the level of exposure to disease of the different job sectors (is) based on the number of people they encounter and how long they work, while physical proximity is estimated based on how crowded their work place. The risk score also takes into account workers’ protection level.” 

The jobs were then scored using a point system, where low risk scores are from zero to 0.5, moderate risk scores are from 0.5 to 1, and high risk scores are from 1 to 10.

For example, according to the site, some of the most at-risk professions are those in the medical field (for obvious reasons) such as dental hygienists, respiratory therapy technicians, urologists, and dermatologists, with their overall risk scores all above four in a zero to five scale.

However, not too far behind are athletic trainers, municipal firefighters, bus drivers and kindergarten teachers, with risk scores of 2.9 and higher. 

Meanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum, professions with the smallest risk of infection and least likely to spread the virus include artists (such as painters, scupltors, and illustrators), private household cooks, petroleum engineers, music composers and arrangers, accountants and economists, all with a risk score of 0.5 and lower.

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The risk factor for all of the same jobs are significantly reduced on a similar graph that shows increased protection through the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and hygiene practices.

As for full industries, jobs under human health and social work activities are the riskiest with an overall risk score of 2.98, followed by those under public administration, defense and compulsory social security at 1.6, and other service activities at 1.56.

Industries with the lowest risk are manufacturing at 0.68; and financial and insurance activities, and information and communication, both at 0.7 

The researchers even included a calculator where you can choose any profession from an extensive list and it will tell you that profession’s overall risk score and risk assessment (low, moderate or high). It also has other details such as industrial sector, occupational group, and the job’s average monthly salary.

Finally, there are data sets on the estimated number of employed individuals as well as those working from home per industry.

Although the insights in the data analytics site could prove valuable in decision-making processes, the researchers responsible for the data analytics caution that the models and results are for academic purposes only.

“Caution must be observed in interpreting the quantitative insights, and these should not replace in any way the official announcements by IATF, NTF, LGUs, and other government and private institutions,” it said.

“Models and model results should be interpreted with guidance from experts. The model results are subject to updates as time progresses and more datasets are received,” it added.”

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Visit the data analytics site here.

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Paul John Caña
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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