Nurse Knowledge, Work Environment, and Turnover in Highly Specialized Pediatric End-of-Life Care

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Abstract

Objective:

To examine the relationship between nurse knowledge, work environment, and registered nurse (RN) turnover in perinatal hospice and palliative care organizations.

Methods:

Using nurse intellectual capital theory, a multivariate analysis was conducted with 2007 National Home and Hospice Care Survey data.

Results:

Perinatal hospice and palliative care organizations experienced a 5% turnover rate. The professional experience of advanced practice nurses (APNs) was significantly related to turnover among RNs (β = −.032, P < .05). Compared to organizations with no APNs professional experience, clinical nurse specialists and nurse practitioners significantly reduced RN turnover by 3 percentage points. No other nurse knowledge or work environment variables were associated with RN turnover. Several of the control variables were also associated with RN turnover in the study; Organizations serving micropolitan (β = −.041, P < .05) and rural areas (β = −.037, P < .05) had lower RN turnover compared to urban areas. Organizations with a technology climate where nurses used electronic medical records had a higher turnover rate than those without (β = .036, P < .05).

Conclusion:

The findings revealed that advanced professional experience in the form of APNs was associated with reductions in RN turnover. This suggests that having a clinical nurse specialist or nurse practitioner on staff may provide knowledge and experience to other RNs, creating stability within the organization.

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