Does social support at home moderate the association between social support at work and work functioning among cancer patients?

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Abstract

PURPOSE: The aims of this study were to examine (1) the longitudinal associations of supervisor and colleague social support with work functioning in cancer patients who have returned to work and (2) the moderating role of social support at home.

METHODS: Data from the longitudinal Work Life after Cancer study were used (n = 384). Work functioning (low versus moderate to high work functioning) was measured with the validated Work Role Functioning Questionnaire 2.0. Social support at work was measured from both supervisor and colleagues with the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire. Social support at home was measured with the Social Support List-Discrepancies. Logistic generalized estimating equations were used to analyse associations between supervisor and colleague social support and work functioning, and to examine the possible moderating effect of social support at home.

RESULTS: More supervisor (OR: 1.21; 95% CI: 1.10, 1.32) and colleague (1.13; 1.03, 1.24) social support were significantly associated with moderate to high work functioning. The association between colleague social support and work functioning was attenuated for those who did not experience enough social support at home but remained almost significant for supervisor social support (1.17; 1.00, 1.37).

CONCLUSIONS: Supervisor social support is associated with better work functioning regardless of social support at home, while colleague social support is only associated with better work functioning when cancer patients experience enough social support at home.

IMPLICATIONS FOR CANCER SURVIVORS: Occupational physicians may play a key role in creating awareness that social support at work and at home are beneficial for cancer patients' work functioning.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of cancer survivorship-Research and practice
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24-Nov-2021

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