Stress and coping strategies among nurse managers

Adelaide M.A. Ofei, Yennuten Paarima, Theresa Barnes, Atswei A. Kwashie


Background: The role of Nurse Managers (NMs) is dynamic, multifaceted and complex thus, exposing NMs to high levels of work-related stress which seriously impact general wellbeing, and organizational outcomes.

Methods: A quantitative cross-sectional approach was employed to examine the phenomenon of stress among NMs in 38 selected hospitals. Census approach was used to collect data from 267 NMs. Descriptive and inferential statistics were performed to describe the sample and established the predictors of stress.

Results: The main causes of stress among NMs are a shortage of staff (94.4%), poor working conditions (91.8%), inadequate management support (89.9%) and heavy workload (89.15%). NMs experienced all the types of stress (psychological, emotional and physical). The major stress coping mechanisms are time management (91.8%), effective communication (91%) and delegation of duties (89.5%) while excessive eating (18.4%) is the least strategy used. Sociodemographic characteristics together explained 6.4% of stress among NMs [R2 = .064, F(6,241) = 2.676, p = .016].

Conclusions: Senior managers of hospitals should create a favourable working environment for nurses and the appointment of NMs should be based on experience and competence. Implication for Nursing Practice: Stress among healthcare managers especially, NMs is very common. This current study has extensively proven that stress among NMs affects their general health as well as patient safety and quality of care. Training on stress management should be organized regularly for hospital staff particularly, NMs to enable them to cope better with stress.

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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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