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Evaluation of the Improvement of Nursing Staff Working Overtime for the Medical Centre in Southern Taiwan

Author(s): S. C. Hsu*1, H. F. Lee1, C. W. Chang1, Y. C. Li1, C. L. Chang1, H. H. Huang1, S. L. Ding1, Y. C. Hsieh1
Affiliation(s): 1Nursing, Chimei Medical Centre, Tainan, Taiwan
Keywords: Nursing staff, working overtime

Nursing care quality is an important indicator for the safety of patients. Working overtime will increase the physical and psychical stress of the nursing staff, decrease the satisfactory degree of their nursing careers, and reduce their wills of retaining their posts. Moreover, the nursing care quality and safety of patients will also be highly influenced.


The purpose of this study investigates the present status of nursing staff working overtime, the correlative factors that affecting working overtime, and the effects of interventions for working overtime. The participants for the data collection are the staff of 35 nursing units of the Chimei Medical Centre in Southern Taiwan. A questionnaire is designed for the participants to understand the present status of working overtime and its correlative factors. Finally, the feasible interventions to improve overtime are carried into execution.


441 copies of questionnaire are sent to participants, and the retrieve rate is 80%. Working overtime is most frequently happened on day shift. Working over 60 minutes in day shift is about 69.3%. Among the investigated 35 units, the worst cases of working overtime are on internal medicine and medical surgery departments (especially on general surgery, hematology, and oncology units). Their average overtime is about 120 to 150 minutes. The correlative factors that affecting working overtime include the disobedience to hospital policy by medical team, the incompletion of medical orders, the poor arrangement of nursing manpower, the complication of nursing record contents, and too many repeated record forms. The feasible interventions to improve working overtime include the coordination of ward deployment policy and order rules with medical team, the re-arrangement of nursing manpower, and the simplification of nursing record documents. After carrying out the interventions, the average working overtime of nursing staff is reduced to less than 60 minutes.

Lessons learned:

With the aid of medical team cooperation and working process simplification, the working efficiency and overtime of nursing staff can be improved.

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