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Work and health conditions of nursing staff in palliative care and hospices in Germany

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Author(s): Schröder, Christina | Bänsch, Alexander | Schröder, Harry

Journal: Psycho-Social-Medicine
ISSN 1614-2934

Volume: 1;
Start page: Doc08;
Date: 2004;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Aims of this representative study were to assess the relevant differences between the work and organisational characteristics as well as the subjective resources and health status of nurses occupied in hospice care, compared to nurses from palliative stations. Further, the assessment of the predictive correlations between the work situation of this nurses as a factor influencing their health and perceived strains was also a leading intention.Method: In a written survey conducted in Germany in 2001, 820 nursing staff of 113 palliative stations and stationary hospices were included. A qualified diagnostic procedure for the assessment of health promoting work was implemented. In order of obtaining a secure comparison, a sample of 320 nurses working in 12 homes for old people in Saxony was also considered.Results: The nurses referred generally to favourable working conditions, still they informed about deficiencies in the perceived participation, organizational benefits and experienced gratification. Hospice nurses experienced overall more favourable work conditions than palliative nurses or than the staff of homes for old people (regarding identification with the institution, organizational benefits, accurate gratification and little time pressure during work). Hospice personnel were psychologically and physically healthier than the staff of palliative stations. Important predictors for health stability that could be assessed by multiple regression analysis were: positively evaluated work contents, the identification with the institution, little time pressure and a positive working atmosphere.Conclusions: The assessed organisational framework is generally more favourable in the institutions of professional terminal care than in common hospitals and homes for old people. Therefore, the conditions in hospices could have a modelling function for the inner-institutional work organisation and for the anchorage of the intrinsic motivation of nurses in the health care system.
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