As a result of the December 2015 Southeast Asian regional economic integration, several potential issues may emerge among workers in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, including mental health and occupational health nursing concerns. This study was conducted to explore the levels of depression, anxiety and stress among Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) workers in four ASEAN countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam. Participants included 2,041 SME workers (approximately 500 from each country) from food and textile industries. Data for this cross-sectional study was collected by self-administered questionnaire, including the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS-21). Multiple linear regression analyses were used to predict the levels of depression, anxiety and stress among SME workers. Depression had four significant predictor variables: age, sleep, employment status and working hours per week. Anxiety had five significant predictor variables: smoking, sleep, employment status, working hours per week and income. Stress had six significant predictor variables: marital status, smoking, sleep, employment status, working hours per week and income. As ASEAN economies become increasingly integrated, more efforts from occupational health and public health nursing professionals are needed to improve the psychological health and work conditions of SME workers in this region.
Keywords: mental health, occupational health, public health, ASEAN, SME workers