Neonatal Intensive Care and Child Psychiatry Inpatient Care: Do Different Working Conditions Influence Stress Levels?

  • Mörelius E
  • Gustafsson P
  • Ekberg K
  • et al.
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Abstract

Introduction . Nurses often experience work-related stress. High stress can negatively affect job satisfaction and lead to emotional exhaustion with risk of burnout. Aim . To analyse possible differences in biological stress markers, psychosocial working conditions, health, and well-being between nurses working in two different departments. Methods . Stress was evaluated in nurses working in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) ( n=33 ) and nurses working in a child and adolescent psychiatry inpatient ward (CAP) ( n=14 ) using salivary cortisol and HbA1c. Salivary cortisol was measured three times a day on two consecutive days during two one-week periods, seven weeks apart (= 12 samples/person). Psychosocial working conditions, health, and well-being were measured once. Results . NICU nurses had better social support and more self-determination. CAP nurses had a lower salivary cortisol quotient, poorer general health, and higher client-related burnout scores. Conclusion . When comparing these nurses with existing norm data for Sweden, as a group their scores reflect less work-related stress than Swedes overall. However, the comparison between NICU and CAP nurses indicates a less healthy work situation for CAP nurses. Relevance to Clinical Practice . Healthcare managers need to acknowledge the less healthy work situation CAP nurses experience in order to provide optimal support and promote good health.

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Mörelius, E., Gustafsson, P. A., Ekberg, K., & Nelson, N. (2013). Neonatal Intensive Care and Child Psychiatry Inpatient Care: Do Different Working Conditions Influence Stress Levels? Nursing Research and Practice, 2013, 1–8. https://doi.org/10.1155/2013/761213

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