Factors related to work ability among nursing professionals from urgent and emergency care units: A cross-sectional study

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BACKGROUND: Nursing professionals are on the front line of health systems in Brazil as well as worldwide. Studies on the work ability of nursing professionals are especially relevant as care demands increase and health care workforce shortages are expected. As the population of Brazil ages, the need for nursing care will increase. OBJECTIVE: To identify levels and predictors of work ability among Brazilian nursing professionals. METHODS: A cross-sectional study with 267 nursing professionals (72 nurses and 195 nursing technicians and nursing auxiliary) from public emergency and urgent care units was conducted. Measures included the following: Work Ability Index; Questionnaire of Socio-demographics, Lifestyle and Work and Health Aspects; and Violence at Work questionnaire. Generalized linear regression and Poisson models were used for data analysis. RESULTS: The mean work ability was 40.4 (range: 22 to 49). Almost 79.6% (n = 211) of participants reported good or excellent work ability, and 20.4% (n = 54) reported moderate or poor work ability. Better perceptions of health and job satisfaction, absence of health issues (past 15 days), lower stress levels, and having a partner were associated with better work ability. Victims of workplace violence were less likely to have good or excellent work ability than non-victims (prevalence ratio = 0.80; 95% CI 0.72 to 0.90). Professionals with cumulative experiences of workplace violence were less likely to report better work ability. CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of good or excellent work ability was 79.6%. Our findings indicate that the following factors are predictors of work ability: self-reported perception of health, health issues in the last 15 days, workplace violence, job satisfaction, stress, and marital status.

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