Arch Hellen Med, 33(1), January-February 2016, 73-83
Work related stress in health care professionals in the economic crisis
M. Saridi,1 A. Karra,2 K. Souliotis1
OBJECTIVE Evaluation of work related stress in those employed in health care occupations in Korinthia.
METHOD The study was conducted in the primary and secondary health care services in Korinthia. The response rate among the health care professionals was 87.7% and the final study sample consisted of 579 employees. Data were collected using anonymous questionnaires. Processing and analysis of the data were carried out using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS), version 17.0 and statistical significance was set at p<0.05.
RESULTS The majority of respondents were employed in a hospital (80.8%) and occupied in the surgical (50.2%) and internal medicine (21.2%) departments. The main stress factors related to working conditions were reported to be the heavy workload (57.5%), adverse working conditions (51.9%) and rotating shifts (44.5%). Approximately one in two employees believed that the economic crisis affects their performance at work, making it the main cause of stress at work (48.2%). Older employees (51–60 years) reported more often stress factors related to the environment (mean: 2.90, SD: 0.831) and the economic crisis (mean: 4.05, SD: 1.117). Employees with the highest level of education (MD/PhD) reported the highest rate of intensity in stress factors related to working conditions (mean: 3.32, SD: 0.882), functionality (mean: 2.94, SD 0.629) and the environment (mean: 2.94, SD: 0.929).
CONCLUSIONS Health care employees reported high levels of work related stress due to factors linked with working conditions, functionality, the work environment, effectiveness and the economic crisis. An association was found with demographic characteristics, including gender, age, socioeconomic status, speciality and place of employment. Health care is a field in which the state should intervene to reduce stress by improving the infrastructure and providing encouragement for the workforce.
Key words: Economic crisis, Healthcare professionals, Work related stress.