Stress linked to nurses’ health problems: study



Work stress, low autonomy and lack of respect have been linked, at higher than average rates, to health problems among Canada’s 314,900 nurses, says a new study by Statistics Canada.

Thirty-one per cent of nurses reported a high work stress — defined as when their job’s psychological demands exceeded their discretion in deciding how to do their work. The average rate among all employed women is 26 per cent.

“We believe that the core reason for much of these findings is the fact that there is job overload,” Marlene Smadu, President of the Canadian Nurses Association, told Canada AM on Monday. “Nurses go into work repeatedly when they are short-staffed.”

The study, based on findings from the 2005 National Survey of the Work and Health of Nurses, showed job strain was strongly connected to fair or poor physical and mental health among nurses. Seventeen per cent of nurses who perceived high job strain reported 20 or more sick days in the past year, compared to 12 per cent of nurses who perceived less job strain.

“Better pay is not actually the solution, if you asked any nurse right now they’d say they actually want more nurses in the workplace, paying me more to do really difficult work doesn’t make my work life any better,” said Smadu.

Smadu said most nurses are too stressed to handle full-time work.

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READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE AT CTV.ca NEWS

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