Running head: SAFE SYTEMS FOR NURSES 1
SAFE SYTEMS FOR NURSES 2
Working Conditions: Nurses Creating Safe Systems for Nurses
Harry L Freeman, Jr., RN, BSN
February 21, 2012
According to Carayon and Gurses, there has been a dramatic increase in the workload of nurses in the American healthcare system (Carayon & Gurses). This has been mostly due to reductions in patient length of stays, staffing, and the supply of nurses (Carayon & Gurses). This has caused an increase in the nurses' overtime, overall workload, and increased nursing demands (Carayon & Gurses). Research has shown that patient safety is adversely affected by nurses having such a heavy workload (Carayon & Gurses). Respectively it has shown that it negatively affects the nurses' overall job satisfaction contributing to their leaving their positions and increasing the nursing shortage (Carayon & Gurses). "A 1998-1999 survey of more than 43,000 nurses in five countries found that seventeen to thirty-nine percent of respondents planned to leave their job within a year because of job demands" (Carayon & Gurses, p.
1). Job burnout and dissatisfaction is directly correlated to the high job demands of the nursing industry which creates the high job turnovers (Carayon & Gurses).
Nurses also have other issues to contend with in their day such as having higher patient acuity, but also having to perform other tasks such as delivery their patients' meals, performing housekeeping duties and such other tasks in order for their patients to receive the proper attention and full care necessary (Carayon & Gurses). Even though these are not considered nursing tasks they must be accomplished for their patients to receive complete care. These ancillary tasks take time, lots of energy, and effort to complete (Carayon & Gurses). They keep the nurses from having time to chart,