Nurturing Well-being in Healthcare: Unravelling the Impact of Job Satisfaction and Engagement on Health

This text is based on the article Effects of effort-reward imbalance, job satisfaction, and work engagement on self-rated health among healthcare workers, published in BMC Health Services Research on 22 January 2021

In healthcare, professionals work tirelessly to safeguard the health of patients. A recent study focused on understanding the challenges they face, such as long hours, night shifts, and clinical pressures and how they impact the well-being of healthcare workers. The study, conducted during The Chinese Sixth National Health and Services Survey in Sichuan Province, reveals essential insights that can resonate with the cancer care community.

The findings tell us a significant story: only 40% of healthcare workers felt their health was  good. One big reason for this is the imbalance between the hard work they put in and the recognition they receive. This imbalance was linked to poorer self-rated health. Moreover, the study uncovers a crucial factor - job satisfaction - that helps buffer the impact of challenges on the well-being of healthcare workers.

So, what can the cancer care community learn from this? Leaders and managers have a pivotal role in bettering the health of healthcare workers. Balancing the effort they put in with recognition, offering chances for growth, and creating an environment that values their work are key. Also, using incentives to keep healthcare workers engaged in their roles can make a significant difference.

This study is not only about pointing out challenges; it is also a call for leaders to take action. By understanding the connections between effort, recognition, job satisfaction, and health, the cancer care community can implement strategies to support and empower its healthcare professionals. This proactive approach not only ensures the well-being of healthcare workers but contributes to the overall success of cancer care, benefiting both the caregivers and the patients they serve.

This text is part of the European Cancer Organisation (ECO) repository of best practices and innovations to address the cancer workforce crisis in Europe. You can find more examples of best practices here.