Selma Adams


This study was concerned with the utilization of nursing personnel on a selected medical unit. The purpose of the study were to find out: (1) if the nursing service personnel were being fully utilized; (2) the percent of the time the nursing personnel spent in giving direct and indirect patient care; and (3) where adjustments could be made to provide a more equal distribution of nursing procedures and nursing personnel.

This study was conducted on a fifty-eight bed medical unit of a selected hospital. The normative survey was the method used and the tool, Patient Care Report, was completed by the team leaders on each shift for thirty consecutive days. The Patient Care Report was validated by the industrial engineer of Loma Linda University. This tool listed a number of nursing activities -- such as bathing, feeding, admitting, and discharging -- which were performed for the patient. A specific amount of time has been previously assigned to each activity based on a mean average. Included in the data were the number of hours allocated for patient care by nursing personnel on each shift. This record made it possible to calculate the percent of utilization of nursing personnel.

The findings of the study revealed that the morning shifts were over utilized and the evening and night shifts were generally not fully utilized. This indicated that the patients could have been given more nursing care since the evening and night shifts were adequately staffed. However, there were days in which the evening and night shifts were over utilized. It was recognized that a nurse with ideals for giving nursing care that meets the patients' spiritual and emotional needs may need time for nursing care and perhaps be even more over utilized than indicated in this study.

Recommendations derived from this study were that: (1) study be given to the amount of time spent on nonprofessional activities being performed by a professional nurses; (2) study be given to the reassignment of some of the more time-consuming activities which are now being done by the morning shift; (4) study be given to more in service education to assist nursing personnel with direct and indirect nursing care; (5) study be given to having the night head nurse give the medications on her shift; (6) a comparative study to be conducted on the surgical unit of this selected hospital; (7) study be given to finding methods of motivating the personnel to better utilize their time on duty; (8) a study be done to find out the amount of time being given for emotional support and health teaching on the various shifts; (9) a study to find out why there was under utilization on the evening and night shifts; was it an opportunity to spend more time with the patient or was more time being "wasted"?

LLU Discipline





Graduate School

First Advisor

(Matilda) Anabelle Mills

Second Advisor

Charlotte Ross

Third Advisor

R. Maureen Maxwell

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Nursing Staff, Hospital -- utilization



Page Count

vii; 68

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website


Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives