The humankind is ageing rapidly, and as a result, there is an increasing need for old people’s homes. The nursing homes face different problems in financing and recruiting the labour force and management. Lack of resources causes the situation, when managers have to find possibilities to accomplish services and to provide quality care with the limited funds. This situation has an additional impact on the nursing professionals, who have to deal with many psychosocial risk factors in their work. The aim of the paper is to explore the work-related psychosocial risk factors and their relationships with mental health problems (MHPs) amongst care workers. A cross-sectional survey was undertaken amongst the care workers in nine Estonian nursing homes. Psychosocial work factors and MHPs (stress, somatic symptoms, depressive symptoms, burnout, cognitive symptoms, and sleep disorders) were analysed using the second version of the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire (COPSOQ II). Descriptive statistics and Pearson’s r correlation were used to analyse the data. The analysis was based on 340 care worker surveys. The highest mean scores for the studied work-related psychosocial factors were recorded for the quantitative demands, influence, rewards, role conflicts, trust, insecurity and work-family balance. Low mean scores were recorded for the meaning of work, role clarity, social relationships at work. The lowest score was followed by burnout and the highest - by cognitive symptoms.
In our increasingly globalised economy, global competitiveness of countries and the means to measure it gain increasing significance. One of the ways to measure global competitiveness is by comparing an extent of the economic freedom that a country has, which also can, as surveys show, largely explain differences in living standards across the world. Seeing as how European economy is similar to most of the Western world capitalist economies in the sense that it has, for a number of reasons, very different economic policy traditions than many countries in other parts of the world, we may approach this topic from a European perspective; consequently, we can see that the main hypothesis of the work can be confirmed, and it is possible, for reasons based in economic or national image nature, to discern which is the freest of world economies by adopting the benchmarking practices of the continent. Nevertheless, the other hypothesis of the work does not fulfill itself, meaning that by adopting taxing policies of some of the wealthiest European Union economies it is not possible anymore to reach the result of the freest economy, both in the world and particularly Europe. Looking at the components and scores of the Index of Economic Freedom, it becomes apparent that the inclusion of government share components in its methodology is very controversial, similarly as the labour freedom component and even monetary freedom, albeit in lesser extent.
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