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Citation Information

Type Thesis or Dissertation - Masters
Title Cumulative effects of living conditions and working conditions on the health, well-being, and work ability of nurses in Grahamstown East and West
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2009
Despite the many changes that have occurred in South Africa since the end of apartheid, there are still residual effects of it, as is evidenced in the disparity of living conditions between different racial groups. It is also evident that there are differences in the work tasks and working conditions of nurses working in different work environments. This project looks at how living conditions as well as working conditions interactively affect the health, subjective well-being, and work ability of nurses. Questionnaires were completed by, and interviews were conducted with nurses from Settlers Hospital and seven municipal clinics within Grahamstown (n=152). The participation rate was approximately 71%. The questionnaires included self-report, forced-choice questions regarding basic demographics of the nurses, work conditions, living conditions, subjective satisfaction levels, as well as a simplified version of the Nordic Questionnaire of Musculoskeletal Strain (Kuorinka et al., 1987), and the Work Ability Index (WAI) (Tuomi et al., 2006). The questionnaires were translated into Afrikaans and IsiXhosa. One-on-one interviews were conducted with the participants, in order to obtain a 24-hour dietary recall, an indication of physical activity levels, as well as measurements of stature, mass, waist girth and hip girth. Factor analysis was performed to identify common variance from amongst the variables, while canonical correlations examined the interaction between the sets of factors. It was found that variables relating to demographic factors, living conditions, and working conditions were closely linked to each other. Factors from each of these groups were associated with life, health, and job satisfaction, anthropometric measures, musculoskeletal strain, and WAI scores. Satisfaction levels appeared to be largely determined by socioeconomic status, while anthropometrics, WAI scores, and levels of musculoskeletal strain were associated with levels of smoking and drinking, race, age, stature, position and tenure

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