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Nursing agency and governance: registered nurses’ perceptions

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attree M.(2005) Journal of Nursing Management13, 387–396

Nursing agency and governance: registered nurses’ perceptions Aim 

To explore registered nurses’ perceptions of standards of nursing practice and factors that affect nursing practice standards. Background 

Nursing governance affects nurses’ ability to manage nursing practice standards. Lack of nursing professional autonomy has been associated with occupational dissatisfaction, stress, turnover and low morale, which impact upon care quality. Method 

Grounded theory was used. Data, gathered by semistructured interviews with 142 nurses, theoretically sampled from three National Health Service hospitals were analysed using constant comparative analysis. Findings 

Nurses were dissatisfied with their governance over factors that they believed had most influence on nursing practice standards. Perceived lack of control over factors that affect practice standards generated dissatisfaction, frustration and demoralization. Conclusions 

Nurses’ perceived lack of governance over their practice requires investigation and attention if occupational dissatisfaction, stress, turnover and low morale, which impact on quality care, are to be reduced. Dissatisfaction with nursing governance indicates a need to review nurses’ professional involvement in clinical governance.
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Keywords: autonomy; control; governance; nursing; professional

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2005

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