Advanced Research Design (Research Proposal)

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Title
A study on the factors affecting nurses’ job satisfaction in oncology wards of an acute hospital in Hong Kong

Question
What are the factors affecting nurses’ job satisfaction in oncology wards of an acute hospital in Hong Kong

Aims and objective of the study
The aim of the study is to identify factors affecting nurses’ job satisfaction in oncology wards of an acute hospital in Hong Kong. The objective is to address the issues concerning the identified factors in order to explore strategies to increase their level of job satisfaction in order to retain nurses and maintain psychological well-being . .

Introduction
Chief Executive’s Reports (HA Annual Report 2011-2012) states that: Manpower shortage not only has adverse impact on the morale and turnover of the existing workforce, but is also a major hindrance when we discharge our responsibilities. Shortage of nurses is an international issue in healthcare industry. Majority of positions were held by nurses in most healthcare settings, and replacement of nurses is costly and time consuming. According to the meeting of Legislative Council (2011), there were 20 093 nurses working in HA in 2011, but the turnover rate of nurses in HA in 2010-2011 were Paediatric (8.8%), Obstetric and Gynaecology (7.0%), Surgery (4.9%) and Medicine(4.9%). As there are progressively increase in demand because of commencing new services, opening of new specialties, nursing workforce decreases because of retirement, poor health condition, left to work in private hospital. According to the data given in Legislative Council (2011), the number of graduated nurses will be about 1150 in 2011-2012, but HA plans to recruit 1720 nursing staff in 2011-2012. There are mark discrepancies between the supply and demand in the market. The oncology wards are facing the same difficulties: persistent high daily occupancy rate, increased numbers of seriously ill patients with decreased numbers of experienced nurses from 3/4 in 2009 to 1/2 in 2012 and under-staffed. The reason behind was our Department Operation Manager requested the majority of experienced staff to be stationed in our Out-patient Department to start new services such as three new Nurse-led Clinics. Nurses requested to have two days holidays each week for adequate rest. They have to act as preceptor to guide the novice staff and at the same time, take care of his/her team with over 15 patients. Efforts have to be made to explore the oncology nurses’ level of job satisfaction, so as to adjust the management plan to introduce ways to increase their job satisfaction and address their physical and psychological needs. Since there were few related studies done on this aspect in Hong Kong. It will be of interest to review this topic and implement change with evidence base.

Literature review
Job satisfaction is considered a critical factor in health care settings for several reasons. Parsons (1998) states that there is strong evidence to support a causal relationship between job satisfaction, staff turnover and absenteeism. The evidence also suggests that when nurses’ job satisfaction is low, retention of staff is also low and staff turnover and absenteeism increases. This combination of events can cause significantly lower standards in health care delivery. There are many theories/ models discovered to look into the factors on affecting job satisfaction. On the early 1920s to 1930s, a Hawthorne study (one of the biggest studies on job satisfaction) was done to find out the factors on affecting workers’ productivity. “Hawthorne effect” was being discovered which provided strong evidence that people work for purposes other than pay (Franke et al 1978). These studies then paved the way for researchers to explore other ways of affecting job satisfaction. Plenty of Models of job satisfaction was then developed. The most famous job satisfaction model was Locke E A’s Range of Affect Theory (1976). The main premise of...
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