Aberrant Work Environments, Rationed Care as System Failure or Missed Care as Skills Failure?

Clare Harvey, Clare Buckley, Rachel Forrest, Jennifer Roberts, Judy Searle, Alannah Meyer, Shona Thompson


Missed’ care has emotional, professional and legal connotations because, as one participant from our study noted, the environment can change so quickly and staffing is not allocated to accommodate this. This study used the MISSCARE survey distributed to nurses in New Zealand to find out what care was routinely missed, and why they missed it. The analysis of data returned from 199 nurses revealed that nurses routinely miss care and become frustrated because they are unable to use the knowledge and skill to provide the care; rather they are forced to prioritise care, some of which is either delayed or consciously missed. Whilst this study supported findings of previous research, the emergence of presenteeism as a factor that affects nurses missing care, was highlighted. This has wider implications to the nursing workforce related to their ability to provide safe and effective care, as well as to the organisations in terms of both budget and safety in care provision.


New Zealand, missed nursing care, nursing, rationed care, workforce

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