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Abstract

Introduction. Currently, the work of managers is characterized by a number of factors having an unfavorable impact on human health. Stress as the main risk factor related to the professional activity is considered to be the major cause of possible poor health among the managers. Depression may result from a stress overload of managers.

Aim. The authors wanted to determine the vulnerability to depression related to professional stress among healthcare managers and to assess gender and managerial work experience-specific differences.

Materials and methods. A total of 235 healthcare managers working in the Republic of Belarus with various length of managerial work experience (women n=142, men n=93; mean age 45.7±1.21 years) underwent a psychological testing aimed at determining their vulnerability to depression. The results of the study were analyzed using the STATISTICA 7.0 software.

Results. The vulnerability to depression in men differed from that in women (p=0.002). The predisposition to depression had significant differences between the groups with various experience of managerial work (p=0.03). The vulnerability to depression among healthcare managers increased with the length of managerial work. The highest level of vulnerability to depression was in healthcare managers with >20 years of experience (p=0.02) both in men (p=0.003) and in women (p=0.04).

Conclusion. Thus, acquiring professional competences as a factor contributing to stress resistance, skills of coping with stress and alleviating its impact on the health status is very important through the whole professional activity. Healthcare managers with the length of work experience of 1-5 years are especially in need of the appropriate knowledge and skills.

Professional Stress and Health among Critical Care Nurses in Serbia

The aim of this study was to identify and analyse professional stressors, evaluate the level of stress in nurses in Intensive Care Units (ICU), and assess the correlation between the perception of stress and psychological and somatic symptoms or diseases shown by nurses. The research, designed as a cross-sectional study, was carried out in the Intensive Care Units (ICU), in health centres in Serbia. The sample population encompassed 1000 nurses. Expanded Nursing Stress Scale (ENSS) was used as the research instrument. ENSS revealed a valid metric characteristic within our sample population. Nurses from ICUs rated situations involving physical and psychological working environments as the most stressful ones, whereas situations related to social working environment were described as less stressful; however, the differences in the perception of stressfulness of these environments were minor. Socio-demographic determinants of the participants (age, marital status and education level) significantly affected the perception of stress at work. Significant differences in the perception of stressfulness of particular stress factors were observed among nurses with respect to psychological and somatic symptoms (such as headache, insomnia, fatigue, despair, lower back pain, mood swings etc.) and certain diseases (such as hypertension, myocardial infarction, stroke, diabetes mellitus etc). In view of permanent escalation of professional stressors, creating a supportive working environment is essential for positive health outcomes, prevention of job-related diseases and better protection of already ill nurses.

Summary

It is known that increased morbidity with temporary incapacity for work (MTIW) is related to stress level and psychosocial factors at work. Practices for stress management, conflict avoidance and optimization of working conditions are known to reduce MTIW level. The aim of the present study was to analyze MTIW and propose measures to optimize and reduce strain at work. The study covered MTIW in labour inspectors, a total of 334 people, men and women aged from 24 to 69. The evaluation was based on 11 of the generally accepted indices. MTIW structure was analyzed. MTIW was rated as high according to case frequency and as very high according to day frequency. The average duration of a TI case was 12.63, and the relative share of people who were frequently taken ill for a long period was 12.81. In the ITI structure, diseases of the respiratory system (42.0%) ranked first, followed by diseases of the nervous system (18.8%), the digestive system (9.9%), CVS (8.3%) and MSS (7.2%). These 5 groups of diseases covered 86.2% of all diagnoses. The remaining 7 groups of diseases covered less than 14% of the diagnoses. The group of people most frequently taken ill for long periods included 28 inspectors who had used 42.5% of the total number of days. Two inspectors with 140 days of absence from work were cases of TI resulting from severe stress and adaptation disorder. Measures were proposed regarding the reduction of strain at work and the risk of stress.

Abstract

The worldwide implementation of school governance reforms over the last decades has changed the function and roles of school principals. Now identified as key players, these changes expose them to new health risks. International research has established the principalship to be highly demanding and stressful. This study addresses work stress, its main causes and coping strategies among school principals in French-speaking Switzerland. While they are most frequently bothered by time stressors, coping efforts are primarily directed at reducing or preventing conflictual interpersonal relations.

Summary

Psychosocial factors (PSF) are leading among the new risks and modern challenges in providing safe and healthy conditions at work. Due to the high mental strain, inspectors are at highest risk for stress at work. The aim of the present study was to make a comparative analysis of PSFs in control activities, rate them and investigate subjective perception of stress at work. Two exhaustive cross-sectional studies were conducted consecutively, involving 338 and 355 inspectors, respectively, working at two organizations with control activities. The inspectors were men and women aged from 24 to 70. The statistical processing of data utilized the SPSS software version 17, at a significance level of p<0.05. A number of common characteristics were found in the activities, the composition and structure of different groups of government staff: the number of women was greater (58% и 62.6%), with people over 40 years of age prevailing (67.3% и 70.9%), and the group with specialized work experience of 6 to 10 years comprised the greatest number of people. We found reliable differences in the answers concerning task requirements and activity organization. Rating PSF, one of the groups of inspectors placed “insufficient time to perform the check-up” in the first place, whereas the other one reported “conflicts while performing the check-up”. PSFs exert an influence on the cognitive functions of inspectors, change their behaviour and emotional reactions and result in more frequent complaints of health deterioration. We found difference in the subjective stress perception depending on gender, age and duration of work experience as an inspector.

Abstract

Work in uniformed services carries a high risk of losing health and even life. The occupational activities undertaken are related to exposure to factors belonging to the group of dangerous (accident) hazards. The work of uniformed services is also a work of high psychosocial risk. It can be said that the stress at work of firefighters or policemen is an everyday reality, which they deal with in different ways. This paper deals with the analysis of occupational stress at work of uniformed services on the example of employees of the State Fire Service. To analyze and assess occupational stress the European Foundation checklist for the Improvement of Working and Living Conditions has been used.

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