Registered nurses

Research Summary and Ethical Considerations Guidelines

The summary should include the areas detailed below. You need to describe this research report as though directed toward someone whose findings you want to implement.


Background of study:

Problem (why this issued is being studied)

Significance to nursing


Objectives: research question and/or hypothesis

Concepts, phenomena

Methods of study:

Quantitative or qualitative

Research design



Results of study:

What did they find?

Implications to nursing

Explain how the findings contribute to nursing knowledge/science. Would it impact practice, education, administration, or all areas of nursing?

Ethical Considerations

Was the study approved by an Institutional Review Board?

Was patient privacy protected?

Were there ethical considerations regarding the treatment or lack of?



Select either the qualitative or quantitative study method for this assignment.

In an essay of 750-1,000 words, summarize the study, explain the ways in which the findings might be used in nursing practice, and address any ethical considerations associated with the conduct of the study.

Refer to Resource Research Summary and Ethical Considerations Guidelines for suggested headings for your paper.

Prepare this assignment according to the APA guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.

This assignment uses a grading rubric. Instructors will be using the rubric to grade the assignment; therefore, students should review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the assignment criteria and expectations for successful completion of the assignment.

Research Summary and Ethical Considerations


In the US, it is estimated that the registered nurses (RN) shortage will go beyond 500,000 in the year 2025. In 2008, the national vacancy rate for RN in the US was more than eight percent. Evidence suggests that the experiences of newly licensed RNs has a direct impact on personal perceptions related to the profession (MacKusick & Minick, 2010). Approximately 30-50 percent of all novel registered nurses prefer changing their positions or leaving the profession totally within the first three years of their clinical practice. There is a need to understand and address the factors related to nursing shortage so as to lay a platform for solving the challenge.
Background of study

There exists a lot of data regarding the bedside RNs. However, there are barely any studies exploring the perceptions of RNs who decide to abandon their practice. Factors such as an aging workforce, increased demand, problematic relationships between healthcare team members, and job dissatisfaction may be attributed to nursing attrition but they have not been evaluated from the former RN perspective (Newman, 2013).

•Significance to nursing

The study is important to the nursing practice since understanding the reasons why nurses choose to abandon the clinical practice will be very useful in coming up with practical and realistic strategies for addressing nursing shortage.
• Purpose

The purpose was to recognize the factors that influenced the RNs decision to abandon the clinical nursing practice MacKusick & Minick, 2010). Understanding the factors related to RNs practice decisions is the initial step towards the development of effective strategies for retaining nurses.
• Objectives: research question and/or hypothesis

What is the experience of RNs who leave clinical nursing?

• Concepts, phenomena

There is a need to explore the reasons why RNs leave their practice from the perspective of former RNs (Newman, 2013).
Methods of study

The study was qualitative and used the phenomenological research design to offer an in-depth comprehension of nurses’ decisions to desert the clinical practice. The interpretative, qualitative study approach was adapted since the research focused on RNs perceptions and there existed no definitive research on the phenomenon. The interpretive hermeneutic phenomenology would give significance to experience (MacKusick & Minick, 2010).
• Sample

Recruitment applied purposive (snow-ball) sampling. The sample consisted of licensed RNs with a clinical practice of 1 year minimum and who were not practicing for the previous five years. RNs with experience of more than year were chosen since they would offer information regarding the factors that led to their decision to desert the clinical practice. RNs in education and supervisory roles were excluded in addition to healthcare workers and licensed practical nurses who self-described themselves as nurses. RNs who had permitted their professional licensure lapse were also excluded as they had chances of not describing themselves as nurses.
• Procedures

The researchers carried out 10 semi-structure interviews with RNs who had left the practice in 2007. The primary investigator contacted RNs who were practicing at various southeastern US hospitals and they were asked whether they knew nurses that were not practicing anymore. Emails that described the study were sent requesting for assistance in recruitment of potential participants. Potential participants were contacted by telephone before the interview to ensure they met the study criteria. Participants from different hospitals were contacted. The investigator organized mutually convenient location and time for interviews. The interviews were audiotaped. Field notes were also made during the interview (Cherry & Jacob, 2013). The transcribed verbatim interviews, recordings, and transcription were compared for accuracy. The participants were given copies of their transcripts, which they reviewed for accuracy and discussed any important issues with the researcher (MacKusick & Minick, 2010). Transcriptions first involved derivation of basic interpretations and later hermeneutics were used to draw contextual meanings. The research colleagues shared interpretive analysis to ensure that proper interpretations were in process. Major themes and ideas were identified as the analysis went on. Similar themes were paired and recorded well. Supporting documentation was coded. All possible meanings were sought.
Results of study:
• What did they find?

In untenable situations, nurses had to leave the clinical nursing practice. RNs felt they were not being supported at many levels and it was more troublesome when their peers did not support them. The physicians and management did not support RNs in clinical practice. Moral distress resulted to nurse burnout, job dissatisfaction, and nursing attrition (Newman, 2013). Cycles of abuse made some leave the profession. The moral conflicts and dilemmas the nurses experienced left indelible marks regarding the profession. The participants were guilty of not practicing clinically but none was ready to return.
• Implications to nursing

With the increased patients’ acuity, medical technology demands, and complex nursing phenomena, retaining the experienced staff at the bedside is extremely important. Identifying when colleagues are frustrated, distressed, or socially isolated may assist in retaining future nurses. There should be implementation of long-term retention strategies and effective mentoring programs that support transitions. There should also be an accommodative culture that embraces diversity.
• Explain how the findings contribute to nursing knowledge/science. Would it impact practice, education, administration, or all areas of nursing?

The study findings are relevant to the practice, administration, education, and other areas. Knowledge of the factors leading to nursing attrition should be addressed so as to end the challenge. Retention efforts need to focus on the work environment including getting rid of vertical indifference (Canadian Union of Public Employees, 2013).
Ethical Considerations

The participants were recruited after the institutional review board’s approval. Participants signed a written informed consent indicating that participation was voluntary and anonymity was provided. The participants could quit at any time they wished but consent was sought before the first interview. A pseudonyms were used for confidentiality.

Understanding the factors fully will ensure that nurse managers can implement efficient strategies for retaining the current staff.


Canadian Union of Public Employees. (2013). Full utilization of licensed practical nurses: A practical solution to the nursing shortage. Regina, Sask.?: Canadian Union of Public Employees Saskatchewan.

Cherry, B., & Jacob, S. R. (2013). Contemporary nursing: Issues, trends, & management. St. Louis, Mo: Elsevier.

MacKusick, C. I., & Minick, P. (2010).Why Are Nurses Leaving? Findings From an Initial Qualitative Study on Nursing Attrition. MEDSURG Nursing, 19 (6), 335- 340.

Newman, P. I. (2013). Contributing factors to the nursing faculty shortage: Nursing faculty shortage. S.l.: Xlibris Corporation

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