The Organizational Work Factors' Effect on Mental Health Among Hospital Workers Is Mediated by Perceived Effort–Reward Imbalance: Result of a Longitudinal Study

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Abstract

Objectives:

This longitudinal study aimed to test the hypothesis that organizational work factors (OWFs) may be related to depressive symptoms through an increased effort–reward imbalance (ERI) ratio among registered nurses (RNs) and nursing assistants working in hospitals.

Methods:

We studied 2117 female RNs and nursing assistants who stayed in the same work unit and position during the follow-up from the ORSOSA (ORganisation des SOins–SAnté) longitudinal study. The work characteristics and workers' health were assessed in 2006 and 2008.

Results:

We confirmed our hypothesis of both direct and mediated effects of OWFs on workers' health. We showed that issues about patient-related information exchanges increased RNs' depressive disorders by increasing first a perceived ERI.

Conclusions:

Our results advocate integrating both the work organizational level and the individual level into preventive actions to improve workers' mental health.

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