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J Nurs Care Qual. 2005 Jul-Sep;20(3):283-8.

Work environmental factors and retention of nurses.

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Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, and the School of Nursing, San Jose State University, San Jose, CA, USA.


Perceptions of the work environment were studied among acute care nurses working in a large county hospital who left their units during an 18-month period, compared to those who stayed. Analysis using Moos' work environment subscales suggests that the nurses who remained in their units perceived less work pressure and had greater perception of peer cohesion, supervisor support, and autonomy than nurses who left. Moos' Work Environment Scale suggests that a supportive work environment enables nurses to provide quality patient care, enhance their own self-esteem, increase job satisfaction, and provide cost savings to their employers. Such an environment promotes retention of skilled, caring, knowledgeable, and experienced nurses who provide better patient care with fewer complications, and reduces the economic and social costs of healthcare for both providers and consumers.

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