Are coping and workplace psychosocial factors related to work ability in physicians? A PLS-SEM approach

  • Joana Ricardo Pires Mathematics Department, University of Aveiro, Aveiro, Portugal
  • Pedro Sá Couto
  • Pedro Bem-Haja
  • Marco Ramos
Keywords: Coping, partial least squares path modelling, physicians, work ability, workplace psychosocial factors


Background/Objective: Over the last few years, new statistical techniques have been developed in the context of multivariate analysis, which are proving to be very useful in the social or health sciences, even marketing. The aim of this work was to study the interplay between 3 scales: BriefCOPE for evaluating coping strategies; COPSOQII for assessing psychosocial factors; and WAI for assessing work ability.

Methods: Considering a subpopulation of physicians (n=35) we applied the Partial Least Squares Structure Equations Modelling (PLS-SEM) technique to study the relation between the 3 scales.

Results: Regarding the analysis of BriefCOPE and WAI, the only BriefCOPE domain significantly related to WAI was ‘Strategies focused on emotions’ (β=0.329;p=0.038). In COPSOQII and WAI analysis, the COPSOQII domain ‘Health and wellness’ was significantly associated with WAI (β= 0.599; p<0.001) with a strong effect. In final model regarding the three scales, we could observe that the apparent relationship between WAI and ‘Strategies focused on emotions' (BriefCOPE) is mediated by the COPSOQII domain ‘Health and wellness’ (p = 0.047), which shows that there is small effect between the BriefCOPE and WAI.

Conclusions: This study is the first to test relationships between these three scales simultaneously. Using a PLS-SEM approach to analyse the data, the results of the present study highlight the central role of ‘Health and wellness’ in work ability and in the mediation between coping ‘Strategies focused on emotions’ and work ability. These data suggest that employers should implement organizational policies that enhance health and well-being in order to achieve better performance from their employees.

How to Cite
Ricardo Pires, J., Sá Couto, P., Bem-Haja, P., & Ramos, M. (2023). Are coping and workplace psychosocial factors related to work ability in physicians? A PLS-SEM approach. Journal of Statistics on Health Decision, 5(2), e31528.

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