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How does the distribution of work tasks among home care personnel relate to workload and health-related quality of life?
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0457-2175
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health. Municipality of Östersund, Health and Social Care Administration, Östersund, Sweden; Department of Health Sciences, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1087-8656
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3975-4868
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2023 (English)In: International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, ISSN 0340-0131, E-ISSN 1432-1246, Vol. 96, no 8, p. 1167-1181Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: The work for Swedish home care workers is challenging with a variety of support and healthcare tasks for home care recipients. The aim of our study is to investigate how these tasks relate to workload and health-related quality of life among home care workers in Sweden. We also explore staff preferences concerning work distribution.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in 16 municipalities in Northern Sweden. Questionnaires with validated instruments to measure workload (QPSNordic) and health-related quality of life (EQ-5D), were responded by 1154 (~ 58%) of approximately 2000 invited home care workers. EQ-5D responses were translated to a Quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) score. For 15 different work task areas, personnel provided their present and preferred allocation. Absolute risk differences were calculated with propensity score weighting.

Results: Statistically significantly more or fewer problems differences were observed for: higher workloads were higher among those whose daily work included responding to personal alarms (8.4%), running errands outside the home (14%), rehabilitation (13%) and help with bathing (11%). Apart from rehabilitation, there were statistically significantly more (8–10%) problems with anxiety/depression for these tasks. QALY scores were lower among those whose daily work included food distribution (0.034) and higher for daily meal preparation (0.031), both explained by pain/discomfort dimension. Personnel preferred to, amongst other, spend less time responding to personal alarms, and more time providing social support.

Conclusion: The redistribution of work tasks is likely to reduce workload and improve the health of personnel. Our study provides an understanding of how such redistribution could be undertaken.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2023. Vol. 96, no 8, p. 1167-1181
Keywords [en]
EQ-5D, Health care, Occupational health, QPSNordic, Sweden, Work environment
National Category
Occupational Health and Environmental Health Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-212245DOI: 10.1007/s00420-023-01997-2Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85164466556OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-212245DiVA, id: diva2:1783355
Funder
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 2015-00647Available from: 2023-07-20 Created: 2023-07-20 Last updated: 2023-12-22Bibliographically approved

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Norström, FredrikZingmark, MagnusPettersson-Strömbäck, AnitaSahlen, Klas-GöranÖhrling, MalinBölenius, Karin

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International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health
Occupational Health and Environmental HealthHealth Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy

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