May 2, 2019

Association between nurse work environment and outcomes

By: Judy Mathias
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Editor's Note

The nurse work environment is associated with the quality of nursing care, nurse job outcomes, patient outcomes, and patient satisfaction, this study finds.

This meta-analysis of 17 articles that reported data from 2,677 hospitals, 141 nursing units, 165,024 nurses, and 1,368,420 patients, in 22 countries found consistent, significant associations between the work environment and all outcome classes.


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Better work environments were associated with:

  • lower odds of negative nurse outcomes (OR=0.71)
  • lower odds of poor safety or quality ratings (OR=0.65)
  • lower odds of negative patient outcomes (OR=0.93)
  • higher odds of patient satisfaction (OR=1.16).

The nurse work environment warrants attention to promote healthcare quality and safety as well as patient and clinician well-being, the authors say.

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