Nursing

Website spotlight: How nurse executives can help tired nurses

Nurse Leader Insider, May 23, 2011

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by Rebecca Hendren, for HealthLeaders Media, May 17, 2011

Working long hours can compromise patient safety, yet 12-hour shifts are the norm in nursing. Nurses love the flexibility offered by 12-hour shifts and healthcare facilities find them easier to schedule and manage. But research shows incidents of medical errors increase after nurses work more than eight hours.

Nurse fatigue and cognitive overload are topics of increasing concern to the healthcare industry, but simply doing away with 12-hour shifts is not a realistic option. They are extremely popular with staff and management alike. Twelve-hour shifts allow nurses to complete a full-time job in only three days, a big benefit for a female-dominated profession as it allows more time at home. Another important consideration is that 35% of all nurses are the sole wage earner for their families.

Twelve-hour shifts give nurses the chance to earn extra money through overtime or picking up shifts at other organizations.

Editor's note: Read the rest of this free article by visiting How nurse executives can help tired nurses found in the Reading Room at www.StrategiesForNurseManagers.com

*Do you need continuing education (CE) credits? Check out this month’s CE article, Evaluating outcomes demonstrates value of education or visit our archives and view a compilation of CE articles (marked with an asterisk).



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