Table 1

Cohort characteristics for the sample of 120 075 UK Biobank participants recruited in 2006–10 and alive up to 16 March 2020

N%
Broad occupational groups of essential workers
Non-essential workers84 94870.7
Healthcare workers10 7489.0
Social and education workers13 47611.2
Other essential workers10 9039.1
Detailed occupational groups of essential workers
Non-essential workers84 94870.7
Healthcare professionals17791.5
Medical support staff12951.1
Health associate professionals76746.4
Social care workers52974.4
Education workers81796.8
Food workers44993.7
Transport workers32792.7
Police and protective service workers31252.6
SOC 2000 major occupational groups
Managers and senior officials23 70419.7
Professional occupations25 92421.6
Associate professional and technical occupations23 05419.2
Administrative and secretarial occupations17 47214.6
Skilled trades occupations83607.0
Personal service occupations76606.4
Sales and customer service occupations36843.1
Process, plant and machine operatives47924.0
Elementary occupations54254.5
Age group (current)
Under 5525 31521.1
55–5944 73437.3
60+50 02641.7
Sex
Female65 06354.2
Male55 01245.8
Ethnicity
White British102 48585.4
White Irish32052.7
White other49744.1
Mixed12181.0
South Asian30752.6
Black32682.7
Other18501.5
Country of birth
UK and Ireland108 15990.1
Elsewhere11 9169.9
Education level
College or university degree48 18940.1
A levels/AS levels or equivalent16 62913.8
O levels/GCSEs/CSEs or equivalent39 73033.1
Other10 1578.5
None of the above53704.5
Deprivation quartile
Quartile 1 (most advantaged)28 48823.7
Quartile 228 62623.8
Quartile 331 80226.5
Quartile 4 (least advantaged)31 15925.9
Shiftwork*
No107 07289.2
Yes13 00310.8
Manual occupation†
Non-manual103 63486.3
Manual16 44113.7
Job tenure
≤1070 89659.0
11–2027 55222.9
>2021 62718.0
Working hours
<4061 94651.6
40–4538 27931.9
>4519 85016.5
Number of chronic conditions
061 24451.0
138 52632.1
214 37412.0
343193.6
4+16121.3
Longstanding illness, disability or infirmity
No94 41078.6
Yes25 66521.4
BMI category
Underweight (<18.5)6130.5
Normal weight (18.5–24.9)44 49637.1
Overweight (25.0–29.9)48 75340.6
Obese (≥30.0)26 21321.8
Smoking status
Never74 38661.9
Previous31 68426.4
Current14 00511.7
Alcohol consumption
Daily or almost daily20 08016.7
Three or four times a week29 94224.9
Once or twice a week35 27329.4
One to three times a month15 77913.1
Special occasions only11 98510.0
Never (former drinker)29792.5
Never40373.4
Total 120 075100.0
  • *Participants were asked “Does your work involve shift work?”, defined as “… a work schedule that falls outside of the normal daytime working hours of 9am-5pm. This may involve working afternoons, evenings or nights or rotating through these kinds of shifts.” Participants responding ‘usually’ or ‘always’ were defined as ‘yes’ and those responding ‘never/rarely’ or ‘sometimes’ as ‘no’.

  • †Participants were asked “Does your work involve heavy manual or physical work?”, defined as “…work that involves handling of heavy objects and use of heavy tools”. Participants responding ‘usually’ or ‘always’ were defined as ‘manual’ and those responding ‘never/rarely’ or ‘sometimes’ as ‘non-manual’.

  • BMI, body mass index; SOC, Standard Occupation Classification.