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Freitag S.,BGW Institution for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention in the Health and Welfare Services | Seddouki R.,University of Hamburg | Dulon M.,BGW Institution for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention in the Health and Welfare Services | Kersten J.F.,University of Hamburg | And 2 more authors.
Annals of Occupational Hygiene | Year: 2014

Objectives:To examine the influence of the two following factors on the proportion of time that nurses spend in a forward-bending trunk posture: (i) the bed height during basic care activities at the bedside and (ii) the work method during basic care activities in the bathroom. A further aim was to examine the connection between the proportion of time spent in a forward-bending posture and the perceived exertion.Methods:Twelve nurses in a geriatric nursing home each performed a standardized care routine at the bedside and in the bathroom. The CUELA (German abbreviation for 'computer-Assisted recording and long-Term analysis of musculoskeletal loads') measuring system was used to record all trunk inclinations. Each participant conducted three tests with the bed at different heights (knee height, thigh height, and hip height) and in the bathroom, three tests were performed with different work methods (standing, kneeling, and sitting). After each test, participants rated their perceived exertion on the 15-point Borg scale (6 = no exertion at all and 20 = exhaustion).Results:If the bed was raised from knee to thigh level, the proportion of time spent in an upright position increased by 8.2% points. However, the effect was not significant (P = 0.193). Only when the bed was raised to hip height, there was a significant increase of 19.8% points (reference: thigh level; P = 0.003) and 28.0% points (reference: knee height; P < 0.001). Bathroom tests: compared with the standing work method, the kneeling and sitting work methods led to a significant increase in the proportion of time spent in an upright posture, by 19.4% points (P = 0.003) and 25.7% points (P < 0.001), respectively. The greater the proportion of time spent in an upright position, the lower the Borg rating (P < 0.001) awarded.Conclusions:The higher the proportion of time that nursing personnel work in an upright position, the less strenuous they perceive the work to be. Raising the bed to hip height and using a stool in the bathroom significantly increase the proportion of time that nursing personnel work in an upright position. Nursing staff can spend a considerably greater proportion of their time in an ergonomic posture if stools and height-Adjustable beds are provided in healthcare institutions. © 2013 © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Occupational Hygiene Society. Source


Nubling M.,Freiburg Research Center for Occupational and Social Medicine | Vomstein M.,Freiburg Research Center for Occupational and Social Medicine | Schmidt S.G.,Freiburg Research Center for Occupational and Social Medicine | Gregersen S.,BGW Institution for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention in the Health and Welfare Services | And 2 more authors.
BMC Public Health | Year: 2010

Background. Due to the decrease in informal care by family members and the demographic development, the importance of professional geriatric care will rise considerably. Aim of this study was to investigate the psychosocial workplace situation for employees in this profession. Methods. The German version of the COPSOQ (Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire) was used for the assessment of psychosocial factors at work. The instrument includes 22 scales and 3 single items concerning demands, control, stress, support, and strain. Results between two study groups of geriatric care were compared to each other as well as to employees in general hospital care and a general population mean (COPSOQ database). Statistical analysis included t-tests, ANOVA and multiple comparisons of means. Statistical significance (p < 0.01, two-tailed) and a difference of at least 5 points in mean values were defined as the relevant threshold. Results. In total 889 respondents from 36 institutions took part in the study. 412 worked in Home Care (HC), 313 in Geriatric Nursing Homes (GNH), 164 in other professions (e.g. administration). Comparison between HC and GNH showed more favourable values for the first group for the most scales, e.g. lower quantitative and emotional demands and less work-privacy conflict, better possibilities for development etc. Compared to external values from the German COPSOQ database for general hospital care (N = 1.195) and the total mean across all professions, COPSOQ-total (N = 11.168), the results are again positive for HC workers on most of the scales concerning demands and social support. The only negative finding is the very low amount of social relations at work due to the obligation to work alone most of the time. Employees in GNH rate predictability, quality of leadership and feedback higher when compared to general hospital care and show some further favourable mean values compared to the COPSOQ mean value for all professions. A disadvantage for GNH is the high rating for job insecurity. A supplementary subgroup analysis showed that the degree of negative evaluation of psychosocial factors concerning demands was related to the amount of working hours per week and the number of on-call duties. Conclusions. Compared to employees in general hospital care and the COPSOQ overall mean value across all professions, geriatric care employees and especially home care workers evaluate their psychosocial working situation more positive for most aspects. However, this seems partly due to the very high proportion of part-time workers. Critical results for the two study groups are the relatively high job insecurity in nursing homes and the lack of social relations for the HCrs. © 2010 Nübling et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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