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Work–family conflict as a mediator between occupational stress and psychological health among mental health nurses in Japan

Authors Sugawara N, Danjo K, Furukori H, Sato Y, Tomita T, Fujii A, Nakagami T, Kitaoka K, Yasui-Furukori N

Received 8 November 2016

Accepted for publication 6 January 2017

Published 13 March 2017 Volume 2017:13 Pages 779—784

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/NDT.S127053

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Prof. Dr. Roumen Kirov

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Taro Kishi


Norio Sugawara,1,2 Kazuma Danjo,3 Hanako Furukori,4 Yasushi Sato,2,5 Tetsu Tomita,2,6 Akira Fujii,7 Taku Nakagami,2,8 Kazuyo Kitaoka,9 Norio Yasui-Furukori2

1Department of Clinical Epidemiology, Translational Medical Center, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Kodaira, Tokyo, 2Department of Neuropsychiatry, Hirosaki University School of Medicine, Hirosaki, Aomori, 3Mizoguchi Mental Hospital, Shizuoka, 4Department of Psychiatry, Kuroishi-Akebono Hospital, Kuroishi, 5Department of Psychiatry, Mutsu General Hospital, Mutsu, 6Department of Psychiatry, Hirosaki-Aiseikai Hospital, Kitazono, Hirosaki, 7Department of Psychiatry, Seihoku-Chuoh Hospital, Goshogawara, Aomori, 8Department of Psychiatry, Odate Municipal General Hospital, Odate, Akita, 9Mental Health Nursing, Institute of Medical, Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Ishikawa, Japan

Background: Occupational stress among mental health nurses may affect their psychological health, resulting in reduced performance. To provide high-quality, sustainable nursing care, it is necessary to identify and control the factors associated with psychological health among mental health nurses. The purpose of this study was to examine the role of work–family conflict (WFC) in the well-known relationship between occupational stress and psychological health among mental health nurses in Japan.
Methods: In this cross-sectional study, data were gathered from 180 mental health nurses who had a coresident child or were married. Data from the Work–Family Conflict Scale, the Generic Job Stress Questionnaire, the Maslach Burnout Inventory-General Survey, and the Center for Epidemiologic Studies for Depression Scale were obtained via self-report questionnaires. The effects of occupational stress and WFC on psychological health were explored by hierarchical linear regression analysis.
Results: The relationship between emotional exhaustion and occupational factors, including quantitative workload and the variance in workload, disappeared with the addition of WFC (each work interference with family [WIF] or family interference with work [FIW]). The relationship between emotional exhaustion and mental demands disappeared only with the addition of WIF. The relationship between depressive symptoms and variance in workload disappeared with the addition of WFC (each WIF or FIW).
Conclusion: Our findings may encourage hospital administrators to consider the risks of medical staff WFC. Furthermore, longitudinal investigations into the factors associated with WFC are required for administrative and psychological interventions.

Keywords: burnout, depression, occupational stress, work–family conflict

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