Introduction: Personal, community, and environmental factors can influence the attraction and retention of regional, rural, and remote health workers. However, the concept of place attachment needs further attention as a factor affecting the sustainability of the rural health workforce.
Objective: The purpose of this rapid review was to explore the influence of a sense of place in attracting and retaining health professionals in rural and remote areas.
Design: A systematic rapid review was conducted based on an empirical model using four dimensions: place dependence, place identity, social bonding and nature bonding. English-language publications between 2011 and 2021 were sought from academic databases, including studies relevant to Australian health professionals.
Findings: A total of 348 articles were screened and 52 included in the review. Place attachment factors varied across disciplines and included (a) intrinsic place-based personal factors; (b) learning experiences enhancing self-efficacy and rural health work interest; (c) relational, social and community integration; and (d) connection to place with lifestyle aspirations.
Discussion: This rapid review provides insight into the role of relational connections in building a health workforce and suggests that community factors are important in building attachment through social bonding and place identity. Results indicate that future health workforce research should focus on career decision-making and psychological appraisals including place attachment.
Conclusion: An attachment to place might develop through placement experiences or from a strong rural upbringing. The importance of the relational interactions within a work community and the broader community is seen as an important factor in attracting, recruiting, and sustaining a rural health workforce.
|Number of pages||23|
|Journal||Australian Journal of Rural Health|
|Early online date||6 Oct 2021|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2021|
- health workforce