The relationship between workplace stress, coping strategies and health status in New Zealand nurses

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Occupational Health and Safety - Australia and New Zealand, 2008, 24 (2), pp. 131 - 141
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This study was part of an international project examining workplace stress among nurses and their coping strategies, and the relationship between stress, coping and health in the Asia-Pacific region. The aim of the present study was to identify dominant workplace stressors for New Zealand nurses, their most used coping strategies, and variables that best predict their mental and physical health. Postal surveys were sent to 190 randomly selected New Zealand nurses employed in clinical areas. Workload was the most common stressor, while "planful" problem-solving, seeking social support, and self-controlling were the most frequently used ways of coping. The link between stressors such as workload and reduced mental health is concerning, especially as effective coping strategies such as problem-solving are already predominantly used by nurses. The findings suggest that nurses' mental health could benefit from a workload that minimises stress, and from increased support in the workplace and encouragement of planned problem-solving.
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