Investigating Issues of Age and Work-Related Stress as they relate to Supporting Health and Social Care Workers through Online Work-Stress Management Interventions

Ryan, Cathal (2023) Investigating Issues of Age and Work-Related Stress as they relate to Supporting Health and Social Care Workers through Online Work-Stress Management Interventions. Doctoral thesis, SETU Waterford.

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Background Previous research on stress in the workplace often fails to take account of age as a variable, particularly in the context of health and social care practice. Utilising an established online work-stress management programme as a case example, this study investigated issues of age and work-related stress as they relate to supporting health and social care workers through online stress management interventions. Methods Mixed methods research comprising two studies were conducted. Study One employed quantitative survey methods, in line with the JDC(S) model (Johnson and Hall 1988), to investigate the role of age in the contribution of workplace characteristics to stress among a specific cohort of health and social care workers (nurses and intellectual disability care workers). Study Two used qualitative unstructured individual interviews with people from the target group undertaking an existing online work-stress management programme to explore experiences of the programme delivery and content. Findings Study One found that nurses and intellectual disability care workers experience poorer physical health as they age. However, age did not influence stress perception or how workplace psychosocial characteristics contributed to the experience of stress among these groups. The interactive effects of the JDC and JDC(S) models were not supported. Study Two found that issues relating to online delivery, disengagement, support and additional commitments affected most who undertook the programme. Differential experiences among participants appeared to be due to factors related to experience, leadership, and responsibility in the workplace, rather than age. Participants had varying personal preferences for how online work stress management programmes should be designed and delivered. Implications for online work-stress management interventions There was little evidence that age should form a factor in the design and development of online work-stress management interventions for health and social care workers. A number of findings relevant to the further development of online interventions and the DELAROSE programme were generated. The dual-focused nature of the programme should remain in place, though this may depend on the position of the target user in the workplace. The support from those who deliver the programme should be consistent and structured. Online stress management programmes that aim to support health and social care workers should focus on their physical well-being and target each of the workplace psychosocial characteristics of psychological job demands, decision latitude and social support.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Work-related stress, Stress management
Departments or Groups: *NONE OF THESE*
Divisions: School of Health Sciences > Department of Nursing
Depositing User: Derek Langford
Date Deposited: 26 Sep 2023 14:23
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2023 14:23

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