The present descriptive study seeks to explore the differences in terms of psychosocial work characteristics and health & well-being indicators among Danes, Western and Non-western immigrants working in the elderly care sector; and to identify differences in the association patterns between these psychosocial work characteristics and health & well-being across these three groups. The study was based on a large-scale survey of the elderly care sector in Denmark with 78% response rate. Results show that Non-western immigrants had more depression symptoms, poorer quality of sleep and more client-related burnout than their Western immigrants and Danish colleagues. All in all, the associations between psychosocial work characteristics and health and well-being were much stronger among Danes than among immigrant workers and particularly weak among Non-western immigrants.
The objective of this study is to investigate patterns of sickness absence in light of health status among immigrants. Cross-sectional data from 2005 was used and the study population consisted of 3,121 healthcare assistants and healthcare helpers working in the elderly-care sector in Denmark. A multinomial logistic regression was employed to investigate the relationship between health indicator, sickness absence and being an immigrant. Our findings show that, on one hand, immigrants have worse health status, but on the other, they have significantly lower sickness absence than their Danish counterparts, even after factors such as age and gender are controlled for. The results show that the relationship between being an immigrant and sickness absence differs according to health status. Our findings are in line with Steer and Rhode's theoretical framework, according to which attendance to work is a function of ability and motivation to be at work.