Possible causes of experiencing problems with sick leave questions in telephone nursing
Background: Registered nurses at primary health care centres in Sweden receive about 20 million telephone calls annually. Questions related to sick leave occur regularly. Previous studies conclude that those calls often are perceived as problematic. The aim of this study was to explore factors associated with problems regarding sick leave questions in telephone nursing.
Methods: A questionnaire was distributed to all registered nurses (n = 185) working with telephone nursing in 26 Swedish primary health care centres, of whom 114 (61.6%) responded. Based on the results of a Spearman correlation analysis a logistic regression analysis was performed of significant exposure variables on outcome (perceived problems).
Results: Significant exposure variables were: experience of telephone nursing, age, being educated in social insurance medicine, and frequency of telephone calls with sick leave questions. Young age was associated with more problems than old age. Those having education in social insurance medicine reported fewer problems than those who had not, and so did those having few telephone calls with sick leave questions as compared with those who had many.
Conclusions: Young age, lack of education in insurance medicine, and high frequency of sick leave questions increased the perceived problem level in telephone nursing.
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