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Correlates and Consequences of Nursing Staff Job Insecurity

JHHSA, Vol. 39 No. 3, (2016)

The health care system, and hospitals, underwent considerable restructuring and downsizing in the early to mid-1900s in several countries as governments cut costs to reduce their budget deficits. Studies of the effects of these efforts on nursing staff and hospital functioning in various countries generally reported negative impacts with threats to job security emerging as an important outcome of these changes. Health care restructuring and hospital downsizing is again being implemented as governments struggle to reduce deficits at a time of worldwide economic recession in 2008/2010. This study examines correlates and consequences of job insecurity among Canadian nursing staff, with a focus on nurses’ well-being. Data were collected from 290 nursing staff working in hospitals in Ontario, Canada. Feelings of job insecurity in the sample as a whole were relatively low. Personal demographics and work situation characteristics were generally uncorrelated with feelings of job insecurity. Consistent with previous findings, perceived job insecurity was once again associated with less favorable work and well-being outcomes. Some suggestions for more successful approaches to addressing levels of subjective job insecurity are offered.

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