Background: Many studies have supported the role of organizational work factors (OWFs) on the risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) and CVD risk factors, including arterial hypertension. However, a little information is available concerning the role of collective stressors deriving from work organization on nurse's risk of hypertension. This study aimed to test the independent longitudinal relationships linking the 2-year incidence of arterial hypertension to collective stressors at the work unit level, among baseline normotensive female hospital registered nurses and nursing assistants, after adjusting for known individual predictors of CVDs and for occupational stress.
Method: Arterial hypertension was defined as the intake of antihypertensive drug or as blood pressure (BP) measures higher than 140 mmHg (SBP) or 90 mmHg (DBP) at both the clinical visit and 1 month later. We analyzed the effect of OWFs at the work unit level, constraints related to the physical work environment and the individual perception of the work environment in 2006 on the risk of arterial hypertension in 2008 among 1882 initially normotensive female healthcare workers followed in the French Organisation des soins et santé des soignants (ORSOSA) cohort.
Results: We showed that OWFs at the work unit level may influence the 2-year risk of arterial hypertension independently of work factors at the worker level, baseline BP, age and BMI. In this study, OWFs affected 2-year risk of arterial hypertension only through direct effects.
Conclusion: Our results pointed out the possibility of a primary prevention of arterial hypertension through interventions based at the work unit level among healthcare workers.