3 Findings on FIFO and Mental Health

A study in the Australia Journal of Psychology moves the debate of FIFO and Mental Health from talking about if there is a problem, to why there is a problem and what needs to be done.

Not an easy fix but consider; focusing on boosting support, managing work design, encouraging social connection on site, removing the stigma from seeking professional help on mental health matters and engaging other professionals to help manage the health and wellbeing profiles of the FIFO worker.

3 findings from the study found:

  1. FIFO workers are at greater risk of mental ill health (depression, anxiety, suicide intention) and lower wellbeing in comparison to other groups.
  2. The worst mental health of FIFO workers compared to other workers was only partially attributable to their demographics. Basically, this means FIFO workers are an at-risk group.
  3. The mental health of FIFO workers was worse during COVID-19 compared to before and their mental health was worse than that of the wider population.

Source: JM Gilbert, LS Fruhen, CT Burton and SK Parker: The mental health of fly-in fly-out workers before and during COVID-19: a comparison study. Australia Journal of Psychology, 75:1, 2170280, DOI: 10.1080/00049530.2023.2170280.

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