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Working capacity

Working capacity is a combination of physical and mental abilities that enable a person to actively participate in socially useful work.

The ability to work depends not only on the functional state of the organism, but on the conditions of social production in which the person participates, creating material and spiritual values, that is, on social conditions. The level of ability to work is influenced by the nature of production relations, upbringing, training, organization of labor and its technical equipment, the mode of working day and rest, public and personal interest in the result of labor, etc.

The most important condition for the preservation of working capacity is the compliance of the functional abilities of the organism with the requirements imposed by the external environment - physical and social.

If the requirements imposed by the work of the functional state of the body do not meet, the working capacity decreases. Preserved ability to work for a long time is promoted by acquired skills to work, labor orientation, rational mode of work and rest, the introduction of production gymnastics, etc.


The following types of disability are distinguished: general - the ability to perform any kind of work in normal working conditions; professional - the ability to work in a particular profession, position; special - the ability to work in certain specific conditions. In addition, there is a complete work capacity, if the functional state of the body meets the requirements of the profession, and limited (reduced).

Each person has his own characteristic potential opportunities for socially useful work. These opportunities are undergoing constant change.

Functional disorders and various pathological processes can cause temporary loss or decrease in working ability (see Disability). Chronic diseases or anatomical defects can also cause such dysfunctions of the body that interfere with the performance of professional work for a long time (or permanently) or lead to the need for a significant change in working conditions. In these cases, there is a persistent (permanent) loss or decrease in working ability (see Disability). Determination of the state of temporary disability is made by medical institution, persistent disability - medical and labor expertise (see).

Temporary and especially permanent disability, depriving the patient of the opportunity to participate in socially useful work, damages the personal interests of the patient and the state. Therefore, the most important social and economic task, in the solution of which average and average medical personnel are taking a large and direct part, is an all-out effort to increase the working capacity of workers and the prevention of disability. In the USSR, a broad program for the prevention of the most common diseases has been developed and is being successfully implemented, and methods for treating and restoring impaired or lost functions are being improved (see Rehabilitation ).

The ability to work is an important indicator of public health. Decrease in incidence and injuries, most often leading to temporary disability and disability; is a nationwide task. In solving it, a significant role belongs to the paramedical staff, who takes an active part in organizing and conducting preventive measures aimed at preserving the ability to work. See also Employment .

  • Forensic ability to work