Occupational Stress and Performance of Nurses in Mulago National Referral Hospital
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The study focused on establishing the effect of occupational stress on the performance of nurses at Mulago National Referral Hospital. Occupational stress was the independent variable whereas nurses’ performance was the dependent variable. It was guided by two objectives: To find out the effect of nurses’ working environment on their performance at Mulago National Referral Hospital; and, to assess the effort-reward imbalance affects nurses’ performance at Mulago National Referral Hospital. The study was carried out at Mulago National Referral Hospital Kampala covering a period of four (4) financials years—2013 to 2016. The study used a descriptive cross-sectional research design. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches were used. The study involved 188 nurses, 10 MoH officials (198) and sampled 159 nurses and 10 MoH officials (169). It was revealed that working conditions at MNRH have a significant effect on nurses’ performance. Study findings also established that motivating nurses enhances their output and performance in which incentives are given to them including though not limited to allowances, days off, gifts, etc. It was recommended that hospital managers at MNRH should ensure appropriate documentation of the causes as well as sources of occupational stress in the hospital setting which might be affecting healthcare professionals at an interval to generate an archive of related stress factors that may impede their performance. Also, it was recommended that there should be provisions to ensure allocation of functioning and preferably new equipment to assist nurses in executing their duties. Improving working conditions in the health systems requires utmost attention in order to tap the best potential of health workers. Working conditions including though not limited to accommodation, adequate supplies, functional equipment in place, transport means, etc. should be priority in order to reduce stress among nurses. There is need to monitor and evaluate the effort and input of nurses in their operations so as to assess the appropriate way to appreciate them. It was therefore concluded that occupation stress among nurses has been found to be an impeding factor to their levels of performance with the manifestations of heavy workloads, working beyond schedule due to the limited constrained number of health workers to serve the national population at MNRH. An affirmation that motivating nurses can enhance their performance was made this implies that if incentives were provided to health workers, they significantly improve performance in their designated roles and responsibilities.