Effect of acute and chronic job demands on effective individual teamwork behaviour in medical emergencies

Authors

  • Josette Gevers,

    1. Josette Gevers PhD RN Assistant Professor Human Performance Management Group, Department of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences, Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands
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  • Pierre Van Erven,

    1. Pierre van Erven MSc Master’s Degree Student Department of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences, Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands and Quality Officer, St. Anna-Hospital, Geldrop, The Netherlands
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  • Jan De Jonge,

    1. Jan de Jonge PhD RN Professor Human Performance Management Group, Department of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences Eindhoven, University of Technology, The Netherlands
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  • Maaike Maas,

    1. Maaike Maas MD Emergency Physician Catherina-Hospital Eindhoven, The Netherlands
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  • Jos De Jong

    1. Jos de Jong MBA Manager Emergency Department, Catherina-Hospital Eindhoven, The Netherlands
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J. Gevers: e-mail: j.m.p.gevers@tue.nl

Abstract

gevers j., van erven p., de jonge j., maas m. & de jong j. (2010) Effect of acute and chronic job demands on effective individual teamwork behaviour in medical emergencies. Journal of Advanced Nursing66(7), 1573–1583.

Abstract

Title. Effect of acute and chronic job demands on effective individual teamwork behaviour in medical emergencies.

Aim.  This paper is a report of a study conducted to determine the combined effect of acute and chronic job demands on acute job strains experienced during medical emergencies, and its consequences for individual teamwork behaviour.

Background.  Medical emergency personnel have to cope with high job demands, which may cause considerable work stress (i.e. job strains), particularly when both acute and chronic job demands are experienced to be high. This may interfere with effective individual teamwork behaviour.

Methods.  A cross-sectional survey study was conducted in 2008, involving 48 members (doctors and nurses) of medical emergency teams working in the emergency department of a Dutch general hospital. Data were analyzed by means of hierarchical regression analyses.

Results.  High acute job demands impeded effective teamwork behaviour, but only when they resulted in acute job strain. Acute emotional demands were more likely to result in acute job strain when chronic emotional job demands were also experienced as high. Although acute cognitive and physical strains were also detrimental, effective teamwork behaviour was particularly impeded by acute emotional strain.

Conclusion.  Acute job strains impair effective individual teamwork behaviour during medical emergencies, and there is urgent need to prevent or reduce a build-up of job strain from high acute and chronic demands, particularly of the emotional kind.

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