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Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2013 Aug;26(4):511-21. doi: 10.2478/s13382-013-0122-2. Epub 2014 Jan 25.

Strain and health implications of nurses' shift work.

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1
Department of Molecular Medicine, Laboratory of Public Health and Population Studies, Padua University, Padua, Italy, alessandra.buja@unipd.it.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

The study investigated whether nurses' different working schedules are associated with different levels of job-related strain, health symptoms and behavior. No reports have been accessible in the relevant literature on the possible association between shift work and job-related strain in nurses.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

This was a cross-sectional study conducted at a large university hospital in North-East Italy, involving 806 nurses working in selected departments. A multilevel logistic regression was applied to assess the association between work shift conditions and selected outcomes.

RESULTS:

Night shifts were associated not only with higher odds of having a high Job Demand, but also with lower odds of having a high Decision Authority and consequently with a stronger likelihood of having higher levels of Job Strain (high Job Demand score ≥ 38 and Low Decision Authority). The night shift was associated with various symptoms, particularly exhaustion (p = 0.039) and gastric pain (p = 0.020). Nurses' working schedules did not affect their job satisfaction scores.

CONCLUSIONS:

It has been confirmed that night shifts are a risk factor for nurses' health perception and working night shifts carries a considerable degree of strain. This is a condition that hospital nursing managements need to consider carefully to avoid burnout in nursing personnel and prevent an excessive turnover in this profession, which is a recurring problem for health care organizations.

PMID:
24057261
DOI:
10.2478/s13382-013-0122-2
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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