|The utilization of associate degree nursing graduates in general hospitals|
Betty Lucille Forest
Uploaded by: Pocket Masters
Pockets: Gottesman Libraries Archive, Historical Dissertations
Tags: New York, New York (State), Nursing
This study was undertaken to ascertain whether associate degree nursing graduates employed in general hospitals in New York City were performing the functions for which they had been prepared in their preservice nursing programs.
The functions of the technically-prepared nurse were identified through a review of the literature and verified by the chairmen of sixty associate degree nursing programs in response to a mailed questionnaire.
Data were collected through the administration of questionnaires to sixty-four associate degree nursing graduates who had no further formal academic preparation. These graduates had been employed a minimum of three months in sixteen accredited general hospitals in New York City. Both personal and experiential information were obtained from all graduates. In addition, tape-recorded interviews were held with the nursing service directors in these sixteen hospitals.
Thirteen of the graduates were employed in head nurse positions. The remaining fifty-one graduates who were employed in staff nurse positions provided data concerning their current functions and activities and their preparation for these activities. These data were analyzed to learn whether the graduates were performing the functions for which they had been prepared and to learn whether they were performing additional activities. Information provided by the nursing service directors was analyzed to find out reasons for the current utilization of associate degree nursing graduates and to identify the directors∆ knowledge of the functions for which these nurses were prepared.
The majority of the associate degree nursing graduates were performing functions for which they had been prepared. Eighty per cent of the graduates were in staff nurse positions and, of these, over 90 per cent spent more than one-half their time in performing the technical functions of nursing. Giving general nursing care was identified by the majority of the staff nurses as their chief function, and this was corroborated by the nursing service directors. It was concluded that this objective of the associate degree nursing program is realistic.
The majority of the graduates reported performing additional activities other than those for which they had received preparation. The graduates, therefore, were not being utilized exclusively to perform the technical functions of nursing.
Associate degree nursing graduates were considered for promotion on the same basis as other nurses. In making decisions concerning the promotion of staff nurses to head nurse positions, little or no consideration is given to the objectives of the various types of programs in nursing and the preservice preparation of the graduates of these programs. The responses of the nursing service directors regarding the promotion of associate degree graduates to head nurse positions and the expectations of these graduates led to the conclusion that not all nursing service personnel are well informed of the objectives of the associate degree nursing program.