Work in care for the elderly. Combining theories of job design, stress, information processing and organizational cultures

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Title: Work in care for the elderly. Combining theories of job design, stress, information processing and organizational cultures
Author: Sinervo, Timo
Other contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Psychology
Helsingin yliopisto, Valtiotieteellinen tiedekunta, Sosiaalipsykologian laitos
Helsingfors universitet, Statsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Socialpsykologiska institutionen
Date: 2000-03-01
Language: en
Thesis level: Doctoral thesis
Abstract: This research set out to examine work and well-being of workers in elderly care from different theoretical perspectives. Work and problems were described, explanatory variables of stress and satisfaction discovered, relationships between stressors and job characteristics, relationships between patients' functional abilities, stressors, physical load, psychological stress symptoms and musculoskeletal symptoms explored. Also workers' knowledge about patients and cultural aspects were described. The data were gathered using a questionnaire survey of personnel, interviews of employees and measurements of patients' functional abilities in residential homes, health center hospitals and home care. The data were analyzed using the t-test, regression analysis and confirmatory factor analysis (LISREL). The concepts workers used to describe their clients were categorized and then quantified. Workers' use of categories were studied using correlations. Work in institutional care is demanding, in home care workers had less symptoms. In institutional care the most severe problems were ergonomic problems, time pressure, patient-related stressors, low skill utilization and autonomy, low levels of task identity and lack of feedback. Different stress symptoms and job satisfaction were explained by separate factors. Well-organized work was noticed to decrease time pressure and thereby physical load. The influence of psychosocial factors on musculoskeletal symptoms was, however, mediated by psychological stress symptoms. Patient characteristics also had effect on stress. Stress was related to workers' interpretation of how stressful patients were. Workers' knowledge was heterogenous and conflicting cultures occurred. When workers described patients as in need of help or as ill, relationships to other parts of the concept network were rare. Seldom emphasized were social, personal and psychological aspects. When patients were described using concepts relating to personal or social aspects, relationships between different parts of concept network were frequent. Stress and job satisfaction were concluded to be separate phenomenons, but the explanatory variables of them to be related. The results supported earlier findings about the relationships between psychosocial factors and musculoskeletal symptoms, and that by redesigning work physical load can be reduced. As the patient-related stressors were signified as important stressors and knowledge about patients differed strongly, work orientation may be related to stress and job satisfaction.
Description: Endast sammandrag. Inbundna avhandlingar kan sökas i Helka-databasen ( Elektroniska kopior av avhandlingar finns antingen öppet på nätet eller endast tillgängliga i bibliotekets avhandlingsterminaler.Only abstract. Paper copies of master’s theses are listed in the Helka database ( Electronic copies of master’s theses are either available as open access or only on thesis terminals in the Helsinki University Library.Vain tiivistelmä. Sidottujen gradujen saatavuuden voit tarkistaa Helka-tietokannasta ( Digitaaliset gradut voivat olla luettavissa avoimesti verkossa tai rajoitetusti kirjaston opinnäytekioskeilla.

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