The associations of occupational hazards and injuries with work environments and overtime for nurses in China

Yan Wu, Jing Zheng, Ke Liu, Judith G. Baggs, Jiali Liu, Xu Liu, Liming You

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Occupational hazards (OHs) and occupational injuries (OIs) may contribute to nurses needing sick time and to a high financial burden for hospitals. There is little published literature about nurse-reported OHs/OIs and their relationships with work environments and working overtime in China. This study was designed to describe Chinese hospital registered nurses’ OHs/OIs and to explore the associations between work environments, working overtime, and nurse-reported OHs/OIs. This cross-sectional study was conducted in Guangdong province in China in 2014. The sample included 1,517 nurses from 111 medical/surgical units in 23 hospitals. The Practice Environment Scale of the Nursing Work Index was used to measure work environment. Overtime was calculated by subtracting scheduled work hours from actual work hours. Six items were used to measure nurse-reported OHs/OIs. Descriptive statistics, Chi-square tests, and two-level logistic regression models were used to analyze the data. The percentages of nurses reporting OHs/OIs occurred in the year before the survey ranged from 47% to 80%. Nurses who worked in good (vs. poor) unit work environments were less likely to experience OHs/OIs (Odds ratio [OR] = 0.65–0.68, p <.05). Nurses who worked overtime (OR = 1.19–1.33, p <.05) and in Level 3 (largest) hospitals (OR = 1.45–1.80, p <.05) were more likely to experience OHs/OIs. We found that OHs/OIs were prevalent among hospital nurses in China. Better work environment and less nurse overtime were associated with fewer nurse OHs/OIs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)346-354
Number of pages9
JournalResearch in Nursing and Health
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2018


  • China
  • hospital nurse
  • occupational hazard
  • occupational injury
  • overtime
  • work environment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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