Journal of Medical and Surgical Intensive Care Medicine 2013 , Vol 4, Issue 2
Determination of Workload of Intensive Care Unit Nurses
Gülay Göçmen Avcı 1 , Serpil Türker 2 , Murat Çifçi 3 , Şengül Topçu 4
1Acıbadem Fulya Hastanesi, Derlenme, İstanbul, Türkiye
2Acıbadem Fulya Hastanesi, Eğitim ve Gelişim Hemşiresi, İstanbul, Türkiye
3Acıbadem Fulya Hastanesi, Yoğun Bakım Ünitesi, İstanbul, Türkiye
4Dicle Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, İç Hastalıkları Anabilim Dalı, Diyarbakır, Türkiye
DOI : 10.5152/dcbybd.2013.352

Objective: The present study was planned to determine workload of intensive care unit nurses who were working in intensive care units of general, coronary, and cardiovascular surgery departments of a private health group hospital.

Material and Methods: The design of the present study was planned as a descriptive study. The study population comprised of 150 nurses working in the intensive care units of general, coronary, and cardiovascular surgery departments of five hospitals of a  private health group  between January 02, 2012 and February 06, 2012. The sample of the present study consisted of 38 nurses selected by disproportionate cluster sampling. The nurses in intensive care units were  working in two shifts a day, the duration of first shift was 10 hours (between 08:00-18:00 pm) and the duration of second shift was 14 hours (between 18:00 pm-08:00 am). The mean working duration of nurses was 56±6 hour per week. Among the intensive care units, general and coronary surgery intensive care units were third generation and cardiovascular surgery intensive care unit was second generation. The mean number of patients was 2.69 in every shift. The data was collected by the researcher using the “General Information Form”, ”Cheltenham Patient Classification Scale”, and “List of Nursing Practice”. The “List of Nursing Practice” was filled by the nurses working during the day and night shifts. During the shift, every procedure performed for the patients was recorded in the list every 10 minutes. The Cheltenham Patient Classification Scale was applied to the patients hospitalized in intensive care units during the study period. The study was carried out within one week in which the nurses participated in every shift. Nurses participating in the study were informed about how to fill the Cheltenham Patient Classification Scale and List of Nursing Practice. The Ethics Committee approval was obtained for the study. Statistical analysis of the data was performed using the SPSS (Statistical Packages for the Social Sciences) version 16.0.

Results: Of the participants, 79% were female. The mean age was 25±2 years. According to the educational level of the participants, high school graduates ranked first with a rate of 55.2%. Of the participants, 86.6% were working in general surgery intensive care unit. Of the patients evaluated by the Cheltenham Patient Classification Scale, 2.6% was classified as Type 2, 34.2% was classified as Type 3, and 63.2% was classified as Type 4. According to the List of Nursing Practice, the nurses allocated their times  as follows: direct care practices (37% for day shift, 34% for night shift), recording (12% for day shift, 12.5% for night shift), diagnosing (19% for day shift, 18.5% for night shift), extra-duty works (15% for day shift,19% for night shift), patient-related indirect care activities (11% for day shift, 12% for night shift), and individual activities (6% for day shift, 4% for night shift). It was remarkable that the times allocated for extra-duty works and patient-related indirect activities were high.

Conclusion: While the percentages of time allocated for direct care practices were 37% for day shift and 34% for night shift, the percentages of time allocated for extra-duty works were high as 15% for day shift and 19% for night shift. In order to allow nurses more time for direct care practices, employment of assistant health-care workers is suggested. 

Keywords : Intensive care, list of nursing practice, workload, nurse