The impact of employing a clinical nurse educator on a nursing uni

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Prusky, Sharon
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, 1994
The issues of job satisfaction for nurses and nurses' continuing clinical competence have become major concerns for the nursing profession as evidenced by a growing volume of research into these areas. Both job satisfaction and clinical competence of nurses can affect quality of care (of which patient satisfaction is one facet). This study focussed on the concepts of job satisfaction and clinical competence of nurses, and patient satisfaction-their interelationships, and how they were affected by the implementation of a Staff Development Nurse on one nursing unit in an active treatment hospital. A hospital-based Job Enhancement Project provided a unique opportunity to combine a dynamic real-life situation with an additional case study approach to examining the issues though interviews and documentation of the relationships among the nursing staff over an 18-month period of time. Both quantative and qualitative methods were used to gather pertinent information in addressing the research questions. Focus unit nursing staff questionnaires returned initially (13 of 27) and at the one-year mark (six of 27) of the Project, and interviews with six key participant nursing staff were used to survey nurses' perceptions of their own job satisfaction and clinical competence as well as their perceptions of their peers' job satisfaction and clinical competence. The patients admitted to the focus unit during the Project time frame were also invited to complete patient satisfaction surveys. The Staff Development Nurse and the Nursing Unit Manager were interviewed to give their perspectives. The Staff Development Nurse kept a journal of her work for the 18 month period, and so did the researcher. Frequencies, percentages, and content analysis of qualitative data provided the statistical and descriptive information for inerpretation. One finding in this study was that the Staff Development Nurse did have a positive influence on the clinical competence of some of the nursing staff on the focus unit, which may have in turn had a positive influence on nurses' perceptions of job satisfaction. The Staff Development Nurse was an immense support for the Nursing Unit Manager. However, the major finding in this study was that there were many other factors which influenced nurses' perceptions of job satisfaction, many of them which were beyond the control of the SDN. The SDN actually became a mitigating factor or a buffering agent in helping the nursing staff cope with these other factors. This study contributes to the growing body of research on nurses'quality of working life and some of the influecing factors. It may also provide insights into the realtionships between nurses and patients, and the role definition of a nurse educator on one nursing unit.
xiii, 246 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Nurses -- Job satisfaction , Nurses -- Job stress , Nurses -- Attitudes , Nurse and patient , Job satisfaction -- Case studies , Nursing -- Research , Dissertations, Academic