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Research Article Open Access
Objective: In Trinidad and Tobago, younger hospital-based registered nurses are at risk of leaving the hospital and the country altogether. Therefore, there is a need to investigate the factors that contribute to turnover intention among younger nurses. The literature on newcomer adjustment has been predominantly used to study the integration and adjustment of younger nurses. However, we focus here on occupational mental health and job attitudes as antecedents of turnover intention across age groups referring to younger, mid-age and older nurses. The aim is to compare across age groups in order to determine whether younger nurses differ in terms of antecedents of turnover intention. The objective is to identify the reasons as to why younger nurses decide to quit the hospital.
Methods: We used a sample of 252 hospital nurses from Trinidad and Tobago. We did a cross-sectional study design and collected survey data using existing instruments. The occupational mental health concepts included role stressors, job stress, burnout, and depression. The job attitudes included organizational commitment, job satisfaction and turnover intention. We divided the sample in three groups: younger nurses, mid-age nurses and older nurses. The analytical strategy includes ANOVA with Post Hoc Bonferroni and stepwise regression.
Results: Younger nurses are more at risk of leaving the hospital. We provide detailed statistical findings revealing that high stress levels and feelings of inadequacy for the job are the most important predictors of turnover intention among younger nurses. We further demonstrate that stress, burnout and depression symptoms are significantly higher and that job satisfaction and organizational commitment are significantly lower among younger nurses. We do discuss findings obtained for the two other age groups as well.
Conclusion: We highlight the need for training and development programs that do go beyond providing knowledge and skill development by considering the occupational mental health of nurses.