Wellbeing Among Russian Physicians in Finnish Healthcare in Relation to Work and Personal Life

Thursday, 14 July 2016: 16:30
Location: Hörsaal I (Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG))
Oral Presentation
Driss HABTI, University of Eastern Finland, Finland
The rising global shortage of general practitioners (GPs) impends the effective functioning of primary healthcare (Thompson et al. 2009). Finland experiences shortages of general practitioners at primary health centres, which amounts to 6% in 2010 (Ruskoaho 2013). Of the total number of GPs, 18% were substitutes and nearly 6% recruited from labour-leasing companies (Ruskoaho 2013). Since inflows of foreign-born physicians potentially fill in these shortages in many developed countries, the inflow of physicians to Finland is low (Kuusio et al. 2010, Aalto et al. 2013). Better work conditions and remunerations are major pull-factors for global migration and mobility of healthcare workers. The socio-psychological work environment, related to interpersonal and social interactions in the workplace, plays major role in work-related wellbeing and job satisfaction of employees. In Finland, studies indicate primary care physicians have poor working conditions (Kuusio et al. 2010), not very satisfied especially in the public sector (Heponiemi et al. 2011), and are the most likely to quit their jobs (Kuusio et al. 2013). This study addresses the migration experience of Russian physicians in Finland, and particularly the question of wellbeing as health workers in Finnish health services and as migrants in Finland. How do these physicians conceive of ‘wellbeing’ and ‘quality of life’? What are the factors they conceive to improve their wellbeing in the workplace and social-family life? And what factors possibly affect their wellbeing in negative way? Using biographical approach, data were collected from in-depth semi-structured interviews (26) to document the work-life experiences of Russian physicians. Among else, the interviews engaged into wellbeing and quality of life as conceptualized and lived experiences by respondents. The study aims to broaden sociological understanding on the issue of their wellbeing and health, and to inform about ways to retain GPs through improved policy in primary care.