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Canadian Public Health Nurses' Job Satisfaction

Authors

  • Maureen F. Best M.Ed., R.N.,

    1. Director, Child and Youth Community Health Services, Calgary Health Region, and Adjunct Assistant Professor, Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
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  • Norma E. Thurston M.Sc., R.N.

    1. Nursing Research Consultant and Adjunct Assistant Professor, Faculty of Nursing, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
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Maureen Best, Child and Youth Community Health Services, Calgary Health Region, Alberta Children's Hospital, 1820 Richmond Road SW, Calgary, AB, Canada T2T 5C7. E-mail: maureen.best@calgaryhealthregion.ca

Abstract

ABSTRACT Objectives: This study was undertaken to test the applicability of using a standardized questionnaire for measuring public health nurse (PHN) job satisfaction and to determine whether or not scores changed over 30 months. The importance of establishing a method for ongoing measurement of PHN job satisfaction was underscored by changing directions in practice and an emphasis on building public health capacity.

Method: A 30-month interval, repeated measures descriptive survey design was used.

Sample: A randomly selected sample of 87 PHNs employed within 1 Canadian regional health authority participated.

Measurement: The survey questionnaire, the Index of Worklife Satisfaction, was designed to measure the importance of and satisfaction with 6 components of job satisfaction.

Results: Pay and autonomy were the most important components; the order of the 4 remaining components changed from first to second surveys. Professional status, autonomy, and interaction were the most satisfying components; PHN satisfaction with professional status and interaction improved significantly over 30 months. A majority of subjects reported that direct client care/client response/making a difference were worklife aspects providing them with most satisfaction.

Conclusions: A valid, reliable questionnaire suitable for ongoing measurement was tested with PHNs, and baseline levels of their job satisfaction were established.

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