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Causal Effects of High Stress Assessed via Interviews on Mental and Physical Health: Toward Computer Agent-Driven Stress Assessment.

OBJECTIVES: This study investigated the causal effect of high stress assessment via an interview on the mental and physical health of workers one month later.

METHODS: Stress assessment interviews and feedback were conducted with 50 Japanese workers. In addition to the interviewer, two occupational health professionals assessed participants' stress based on recordings. The average treatment effect was estimated by propensity score matching.

RESULTS: High stress, according to the interview-based assessment, had a significant negative causal effect on self-reported well-being one month later (95% confidence interval: -3.02, -1.10). In addition, no effect of high stress on stress load, mental and physical symptoms, or burnout was observed.

CONCLUSION: This study provides important insights into the prognosis of individuals who were assessed through interviews to have high stress. The findings are expected to help automate stress assessments using computer agents.

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