Nursing time allocation and other considerations for staffing

Marilyn B. Gran-Moravec, Christina M. Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


The purpose of this project was to evaluate how nursing staff on the telemetry unit at Merle West Medical Center, a rural Pacific northwest community medical center in the USA, spend their time on selected nursing tasks, and how they believed staffing and patient acuity levels could best be determined. A self-report survey tool was developed, piloted and administered. Of the tasks that were listed in the survey, registered nurses (RNs) reported spending 39% of their time performing tasks that RNs only can perform. RNs reported spending 12% of their time performing activities that certified nursing assistants (CNAs) could perform alone and 49% of their time was spent on tasks that both RNs and CNAs must perform. Results from the quantitative portion of the survey indicated that RNs may not be used efficiently due to task overlap. Administering a modified survey which includes a balance of direct and indirect patient care tasks, as well as only those tasks that are truly performed frequently, will increase the relevance of the results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-133
Number of pages8
JournalNursing and Health Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2005


  • Nurse activities
  • Nurse staffing
  • Quality improvement
  • Questionnaires
  • Skill mix

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nursing(all)


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