A Descriptive Study of Nursing Peer-Review Programs in US Magnet® Hospitals

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The goal of this study was to assess the types of nursing peer review (NPR) programs in US Magnet® organizations.


The 2 most predominant models of NPR programs in the literature are performance evaluation and clinical peer review. The literature on clinical peer review is primarily descriptive, outlining structures and anecdotal outcomes.


Participants from hospitals holding Magnet recognition were selected using a stratified random-sampling method. A survey developed by the researchers assessed the presence of NPR. If clinical NPR was in place, program design, evaluation measurements, and barriers were explored.


Findings suggest wide variability in NPR models. More than one-third of the respondents conduct peer evaluation as the only mechanism of NPR. Most hospitals with a clinical peer-review program reported a case review structure and process measurements not supported by data.


The variations noted in this study suggest more research is needed to measure the effectiveness of NPR models and associated outcomes.

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