NEED FOR PROVISION OF PSYCHOSOCIAL SUPPORT SERVICES TO NURSES WORKING IN EMERGENCY SECTIONS OF GOVERNMENT HOSPITALS
AbstractNursing is a one of the highly stressful occupation.1High levels of occupational stress are believed toaffect the physical and mental health of nurses.Constantly working in the emergency departments,nurses show higher level of psychological distress,burnout and are more prone to develop psychiatricproblems.2 These psychiatric problems arecommonly manifested in the form of anger, tension,uptightness, low mood, exhaustion, and avoidancesymptoms. In a comparative study, it was found thatnurses working in emergency wards have a higherstress level compared to the control sample.3 Theyface greater work pressure and worse healthresponsibility and realisation of a health-promotinglifestyle. In addition, working in an inpatientdepartment appears to be a potent stressor fornurses.4 It is also evident that nurses workingmorning shifts showed higher stress levels, and poorsleep quality as stress level is directly correlated tosleep.5 Although all nurses undergo the stressfulsituation, the younger nurses had more nursingstress than older nurses.6Although psychosocial health issues ofnurses and its intervention has been studiedextensively in the US and Europe, there is a need toexplore these factors from the Pakistani perspective.This editorial is aimed to raise the interest on thepsychosocial problems of the nurses working in theemergency units of government hospitals.Occupational stress among nurses is the result ofexposure to a combination of working environmentand personal factors. For example, role boundaryand role insufficiency were the factors that had thehighest association with occupational stress.7 Highrates of emotional exhaustion in nurses were foundto be predicted by young age, high psychologicaljob demands, low psychological job control, lowsocial support at the workplace, and job strain.8It is recommended to conduct researches toidentify organizational, family or social factorswhich contribute to reduction of perceivedoccupational stress and increase job satisfaction andjob performance among the nurses and specificallythose who work in the emergency units of thehospitals. For intervention, occupational trainingprogrammes and occupational health education isnecessary to improve the knowledge and ability ofnurses to cope with job demands and reduceoccupational stress.7Cognitive-behavioural stress managementtraining program on stress reduction among nursesare quite effective.1 In addition, psychologicalassessment can be helpful for identification of theproblems. On the basis of assessment, individualcounselling sessions can be provided to those whohave psychological problems, are more vulnerableand/or at risk. Moreover, Workshops and seminarson the issues like, work motivation, angermanagement, personal management, andcommunication skills can be helpful for the nurses.Nurses’ realisation of a health-promoting lifestyle9can be achieved through good relationships andappropriately increase employment of nursesthrough a good work atmosphere in hospitals. Thesestrategies will have implications and the long termeffects. It will have not only the positive effect onthe nurses, but also it will improve the nurse-patientrelationship. Ultimately, overall performance of theorganization will be enhanced
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