Computer Ergonomic Practices and Musculoskeletal Complaints Among Computer Users in a Nigerian University Community
Background and Objective: Over the past few decades, computer-based technology has become indispensable in most offices and has become part of the day to day operations in our Universities. With the increased proliferation of computer technology, there is concerns about its safe and comfortable use as many scientific studies have found various associations between computer use and musculoskeletal discomfort. This study was designed to document the computer ergonomic practices of secretarial staff within the university. Their expressed musculoskeletal complaints were also documented.
Method: The study was descriptive and cross-sectional in design. Purposive sampling technique was used to select 240 secretarial staffs who participated in the study. Random sampling technique was used to select thirty secretaries who were observed at their workstations, and 50 heads of department who were interviewed. Data was analysed using descriptive and chi-square statistics.
Results: The study revealed poor computer ergonomics practice, lack of training of computer users and non-availability of policies on computer ergonomics within the University. Majority (70%) had experienced musculoskeletal symptoms in the neck, shoulder, back and wrist during the 12 months preceding the study, which were attributed to computer use.
Conclusion: Computer ergonomic practices of secretarial staff within the university is poor. Computer ergonomic training should be organized for computer users within the university.
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