Defining Nursing Assignment Patterns

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A new way of defining nursing assignment patterns, consistent with current work in studies of organizations, is presented. An instrument has been devised which allows direct measurement of the assignment pattern in use on a patient unit. Although current instrumentation requires continued refinement, the instrument has been used successfully on a dozen patient units to characterize the assignment pattern and appears to be both practical and superior to more conventional methods of characterizing assignment patterns which are now in use.

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