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Nurses constitute the largest workforce for achieving organizational goals in health care services. Nurses’ intention to leave their profession is one of the foremost challenges globally for nursing leaders and the health settings. This study aimed to develop and test a model of factors influencing nurses’ intention to leave nursing in Thailand at a time when there is an attrition crisis. From nine government hospitals in all regions of Thailand, 405 registered nurses were recruited by multi-stage sampling. Participants completed a questionnaire comprising eight sections: Demographic data, Job satisfaction, Burnout, Professional commitment, Nurse practice environment, Work-family conflict, Employment opportunity, and Intention to leave nursing. Path analysis was utilized to test the model.
Findings revealed that the modified model fitted the empirical data and explained 45% of the variance in intention to leave. Burnout was the strongest factor influencing intention to leave, both directly and indirectly through job satisfaction and professional commitment. Work-family conflict and nurse practice environment influenced intention to leave, indirectly through burnout, job satisfaction, and professional commitment. Work-family conflict also directly influenced intention to leave, but the nurse practice environment had no direct effect. Job satisfaction only indirectly influenced intention to leave through professional commitment whereas employment opportunity directly influenced this. Thus, to try to retain nurses within the profession, nurse and health care policymakers can design various strategies to reduce burnout; assist nurses to find a balance between work and family domains; and enhance their satisfaction and commitment to the profession to prevent them from leaving.
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