New Nurses' Survey Reveals Bigger Workload and Less Patient Time

The nursing profession is changing, and the role RNs play at hospitals is expanding.  And while most nurses are generally satisfied with their jobs, many have a negative outlook for the future, according to a new survey released by Jackson Healthcare, Care Logistics and Jackson Nurse Professionals.

Factors such as inadequate staff to cover the number of patients and the addition of peripheral duties and documentation for regulatory requirements are cited by large numbers of the 1,333 hospital-based registered nurses surveyed as inhibiting patient time. Even indirect care, such as patient care coordination, paperwork and documentation, take time away from patients bedsides. Nurses report these tasks can take between two and four hours of their workdays.

Teamwork and communication are extremely important as nurses become bigger players at hospitals. And most RNs surveyed rate these essentials as good or excellent.  But a significant number of nurses 30 percent say they feel bullied at work, either by their superiors, peers or physicians.  Additionally, an overwhelming majority almost three-quarters of those surveyed report feeling pressured to positively influence patient satisfaction surveys. 

More than half the nurse respondents say the profession has changed for the worse. And job satisfaction has a direct bearing on a nurses outlook for the future of the profession.  Of those who are dissatisfied with their roles, 75 percent say nursing has changed for the worse, compared with 39 percent of RNs who are satisfied with their jobs.

Maintaining a positive workplace culture in our hospitals not only fosters better job satisfaction, it also can improve a nurses performance and subsequently, even enhance patient outcomes, says Bob Schlotman, chief marketing officer of Jackson Healthcare.

The study was conducted online from September through October 2013. Invitations for the survey were emailed to 59,336 RNs, which included those who have been placed by Jackson Healthcare staffing companies and those who have not.

1,333 hospital-based RNs participated in the survey. Respondents were self-selected and represented each specialty and region of the U.S. The error range for this survey is +/- 2.7% at a 95% confidence level.

Source: Jackson Healthcare