Self-employed workers with chronic health conditions: A qualitative study

Dana Yagil, Miri Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chronic health conditions affect many individuals of working age, who cope with physical, psychological, and social difficulties that often involve limited work ability. This qualitative study explored experiences of self-employed individuals with chronic health conditions to advance our understanding of the effect of chronic illness on work. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with 23 self-employed individuals coping with cancer, heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, lung disease, or asthma. Data were analyzed with thematic analysis. Analysis of the interviews revealed four themes: uncertainty in planning work and committing to customers, acceptance versus denial of reduced work abilities, disclosure of health status to workers and customers, and temporal substitutes as a source of both support and concern. The results indicate that self-employed workers with a chronic health condition cope with unique challenges due to the need to sustain their business in the face of illness and a sense of sole responsibility.

Original languageAmerican English
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Early online date22 Mar 2024
StatePublished Online - 22 Mar 2024


  • chronic health condition
  • qualitative research
  • self-employed
  • work

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology


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