A new authoritative mental health review for seafaring personnel has been published by Dr Samantha K. Brooks and Professor Neil Greenberg of the Department of Psychological Medicine, King’s College London, through BMC Psychology.

The systematic review aimed to update previous reviews by collating recent literature (published between 2012 and 2021) on the factors associated with mental health and well-being in seafaring personnel. Sixty-three studies were reviewed. 

In terms of findings, risk factors for poor mental health among seafarers appear to be younger age; being single; poor physical health; exposure to noise/vibration; feeling unsafe; high job demands; long working hours; night/irregular shifts; poor sleep; poor team cohesion; poor perception of management; poor social support; lack of autonomy; scheduling uncertainties; long duration at sea; and over-commitment.

The authors concluded that; "there are numerous steps that maritime managers could take to improve the well-being of their personnel, including increased monitoring of the potential for poor mental health in their staff, increasing crew numbers and provision of education and support".

Read the full reviewhttps://bmcpsychology.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40359-022-00850-4


BMC Psychology is an open access, peer-reviewed journal that considers manuscripts on all aspects of psychology, human behaviour and the mind, including developmental, clinical, cognitive, experimental, health and social psychology, as well as personality and individual differences. 

Conflict of interest check. Professor Greenberg is a non-executive Board Member of Human Rights at Sea.

Citation: Brooks, S.K., Greenberg, N. Mental health and psychological well-being of maritime personnel: a systematic review. BMC Psychol 10, 139 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40359-022-00850-4