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

Oncology/haematology nurses: a study of job satisfaction, burnout, and intention to leave the specialty

Linda Barrett and Patsy Yates

Australian Health Review 25(3) 109 - 121
Published: 2002


The impact of the current nursing shortage on the health care system is receiving attention by both state and federal governments. This study, using a convenience sample of 243 oncology/haematology nurses working in 11 Queensland health care facilities, explored factors that influence the quality of nurses' working lives. Although nurses reported high levels of personal satisfaction and personal accomplishment, results indicated that nearly 40% of registered nurses (RNs) are dealing with workloads they perceive excessive, 48% are dissatisfied regarding pay, and professional support is an issue. Furthermore, emotional exhaustion is a very real concern: over 70% of the sample experienced moderate to high levels. Over 48% of the sample could not commit to remaining in the specialty for a further 12 months. Health care managers and governments should implement strategies that can increase nurses' job satisfaction and reduce burnout, thereby enhancing the retention of oncology/haematology nurses.

© AHHA 2002

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