Sick Leave and Its Determinants in Professional Soldiers of the Slovenian Armed Forces

Selič, Polona; Petek, Davorina; Serec, Maša; Makovec, Maja Rus
December 2010
Croatian Medical Journal;Dec2010, Vol. 51 Issue 6, p543
Academic Journal
Aim To assess whether demographic characteristics, self-rated health status, coping behaviors, satisfaction with important interpersonal relationships, financial situation, and current overall quality of life are determinants of sick leave duration in professional soldiers of the Slovenian Armed Forces. Methods In 2008, 448 military personnel on active duty in the Slovenian Armed Forces were invited to participate in the study and 390 returned the completed questionnaires (response rate 87%). The questionnaires used were the self-rated health scale, sick leave scale, life satisfaction scale, Folkman-Lazarus'Ways of Coping Questionnaire, and a demographic data questionnaire. To partition the variance across a wide variety of indicators of participants' experiences, ordinal modeling procedures were used. Results A multivariate ordinal regression model, explaining 24% of sick leave variance, showed that the following variables significantly predicted longer sick leave duration: female sex (estimate, 1.185; 95% confidence interval [Cl], 0.579-1.791), poorer self-rated health (estimate, 3.243; 95% Cl, 1.755-4.731), lower satisfaction with relationships with coworkers (estimate, 1.333; 95% Cl, 0.399-2.267), and lower education (estimate, 1.577; 95% Cl, 0.717-2.436). The impact of age and coping mechanisms was not significant. Conclusion Longer sick leave duration was found in women and respondents less satisfied with their relationships with coworkers, and these are the groups to which special attention should be awarded when planning supervision, work procedures, and gender equality policy of the Armed Forces. A good way of increasing the quality of interpersonal relationships at work would be to teach such skills in teaching programs for commanding officers.


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