Objectives. Alongside individual indicators of job performance, even workers’ health status could be a criterion for selection. The mechanisms for health selection are a reduction of productivity in relation to illness or certain health behaviour. The aim of the study was to establish how indicators of workers’ health status, which are accessible to the employer, influence the employer’s decision-making on which workers to retain and which to dismiss during personnel restructuring in the enterprise.
Methods. Due to a planned closure of a plant, the observed company began personnel restructuring which included a strategic decrease in the number of employees and the relocation of workers within the company. Two nested case control studies were conducted. The cases were divided into two groups and defined as follows: employees who were relocated and employees whose employment contract was terminated.
Results. The results show that the disability category and long-time sick leave exert the greatest influence on the employer’s decision on the selection of workers. Workers with work-related disability have lower odds to be relocated to a new workplace (OR=0.5; 95% CI 0.2 to 1.1) and higher odds to be dismissed (OR=6.51; 95% CI 3.33 to 12.72). The workers with a history of a long-time sick leave also have lower odds to be relocated (OR=0.31; 95% CI 0.11 to 0.88) and higher odds to be dismissed (OR=4.32; 95% CI 2.08 to 8.96).
Conclusions. Indicators of health which were accessible to the employer actually exerted influence on the employer’s decision-making, which could show a direct form of health selection.
Some factors affecting the decision on non-mandatory vaccination in an influenza pandemic: comparison of pandemic (H1N1) and seasonal influenza vaccination
Background: The 2009 influenza pandemic caused by the influenza A (H1N1) 2009 virus was accompanied by a debate about whether or not to be vaccinated. The percentage of people who decided to be vaccinated was lower than in the case of seasonal influenza vaccination. We therefore compared factors influencing the decision on pandemic and seasonal influenza vaccination.
Method: Slovene inhabitants aged 18 and over (N=1383) completed an internet based survey on socio-demographic and health behaviour-related characteristics, personality traits, and characteristics of decision-making. Two stepwise logistic regression analyses were performed, one with an uptake of the pandemic influenza vaccine and the other with an uptake of the seasonal influenza vaccine as a dependent variable.
Results: In addition to common predictors of a decision in favour of the two vaccinations (age, gender, chronic illnesses, working in healthcare, trust in media news and vaccination side-effects in someone close), deciding in favour of vaccination against the pandemic virus was related to living with children and thoroughness in decision-making. It was also related to being vaccinated against seasonal influenza, trust in pandemic vaccine safety and professional information in favour of vaccination, and the decision of someone close.
Conclusions: In the face of the pandemic threat and lack of information, people behaved as they had in previous similar situations and according to the behaviour of people close to them and information from trusted sources. Concern for children and decision-making characteristics also became important. These factors should be considered in future crisis interventions.
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Background: Information and communication technology (ICT) and paperless practices have been shown to improve “existing processes in the workplace” “as well as being an important component of modern primary healthcare”. The aim of our study was to analyse the attitudes of health-care professionals and patients with regard to paperless practice and the most frequently used information and communication technology tools in Slovenian primary healthcare.
Methods and participants: Qualitative methodology using focus groups of 22 primary care physicians, 14 nurses and 18 patients.
Results: The areas recognised by all participants as important for further information and communication technology development were: computer-supported decision making, accessibility and completeness of personal e-health data, emergency cases, support for chronic disease management, ICT related time savings, e-prescriptions and e-discharge letters. The most important identified barriers impeding the use of ICT were: the heavy workload of primary care physicians and nurses, health insurance reimbursement rules and duplication of work using both paper and electronic health records.
Conclusions: This study highlighted a number of strengths of ICT use in primary care as well as numerous areas where changes in procedures and improvement of ICT tools to support them are needed.
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