Australian Health Review Australian Health Review Society
Journal of the Australian Healthcare & Hospitals Association
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Factors affecting turnover intentions among public hospital doctors in a middle-level city in central China

Fengfan Zhang A , Zhenni Luo B , Ting Chen A , Rui Min A and Pengqian Fang A C

A School of Medicine and Health Management, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, 13 Hangkong Road, Qiaokou District, Wuhan 430030, China. Email: zhang1211@126.com; li_chenting@hust.edu.cn; ruimin0801@163.com

B School of Health Management, Guangzhou Medical University, 195 Dongfeng West Road, Yuexiu District, Guangzhou 510182, China. Email: janerowe@163.com

C Corresponding author. Email: pfang@mails.tjmu.edu.cn

Australian Health Review - http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/AH15238
Submitted: 18 December 2015  Accepted: 2 March 2016   Published online: 28 April 2016

Abstract

Objective The aim of the present study was to explore prominent factors affecting turnover intentions among public hospital doctors in urban areas, particularly in Xiangyang City, Hubei Province, a middle-level city in central China.

Methods Questionnaires were used to collect data from 284 public hospital doctors. Pearson’s Chi-squared was used to assess whether sociodemographic and other factors were related to the turnover intentions of public hospital doctors. Binary logistic regression was performed to determine the significant factors that influence turnover intentions.

Results The analysis revealed that 28.2% of public hospital doctors intended to leave the hospital where they were currently employed. Dissatisfaction with working conditions and hospital management processes, as well as work pressures, were significant factors contributing to the turnover intentions of public hospital doctors.

Conclusion Research into turnover intentions indicates that public hospital doctors surveyed in urban China give greater weight to their professional environment and career development rather than salary in their employment decisions.

What is known about the topic? Turnover of medical staff is a concern to hospital administrators because it is costly and detrimental to organisational performance and quality of care. Most studies have focused on the effects of individual and organisational factors on nurses’ intentions to leave their employment. Income dissatisfaction was one of the determining factors of turnover intentions in previous studies.

What does this paper add? The satisfaction of public hospital doctors with regard to income is not a determining factor of turnover intentions. In contrast with findings of previous studies, the doctors in public hospitals in urban China in the present study gave greater weight to their professional environment and career development in their employment decisions.

What are the implications for practitioners? The findings suggest that health service managers and policy makers should pay greater attention to the factors affecting public hospital doctors’ turnover intentions. This study will be useful for optimising public hospital management and minimising the turnover of doctors in China.

Additional keyword: job satisfaction.


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