‘Why nurses are leaving the profession … lack of support from managers’: What nurses from an e-cohort study said

Authors

  • Anthony Tuckett PhD MA BN RN,

    Senior Lecturer, Deputy Director, Corresponding author
    1. School of Nursing and Midwifery, The University of Queensland, Herston, Queensland, Australia
    2. The University of Queensland/Blue Care Research and Practice Development Centre, Milton BC, Queensland, Australia
    • Correspondence: Anthony Tuckett, School of Nursing and Midwifery, The University of Queensland, Herston Campus, Herston Road, Herston, Qld 4006, Australia. Email: a.tuckett@uq.edu.au

    Search for more papers by this author
  • Peta Winters-Chang MMid GradDipMid BNurs GradCertNursScience-Clinical Teaching RN,

    Lecturer and Continuity of Care Experience Coordinator, Bachelor of Midwifery & Dual Degree
    1. School of Nursing and Midwifery, Royal Brisbane & Women's Hospital, The University of Queensland, Herston, Queensland, Australia
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Fiona Bogossian PhD MPH BAppSci(N-with distinction) DipAppSci (N.Ed) RM RN FACMI,

    Associate Professor and Director of Research
    1. School of Nursing & Midwifery, The University of Queensland, Herston, Queensland, Australia
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Michael Wood Dip.App.Sci. (Nautical) BBus(HR) BDivinity Dip.Prof Coaching

    Chaplain
    1. The University of Western Australia, Crawley, Western Australia, Australia
    Search for more papers by this author

  • Conflict of Interest: The authors declare that Michael Wood is a Consultant, Open Space Technology.
  • Source of Funding: This Nurses and Midwives e-Cohort Study is supported by grants from the Australian Research Council (LP0562102), Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (2005002108) and New Zealand Health Research Council (456163). Industry partners providing additional funding include: Queensland Health, the South Australian Department of Health, Injury Pre vention and Control Australia (Pty Ltd), Nursing Council of New Zealand and the Macquarie Bank Foundation. Industry partners providing in kind support for the project include: Queensland Nursing Council, Nurses and Midwives Board of New South Wales, Nurses Board of Tasmania, Nurses Board of Western Australia, Nurses Board of the Australian Capitol Territory and Nursing Council of New Zealand. Corporate sponsors include Virgin Blue, Virgin Atlantic and MessageNet.

Abstract

The shortage of nurses is known. We explored nurses' reasons for leaving the profession based on responses from an e-newsletter of the Nurses and Midwives e-cohort Study. Qualitative content analysis of data from email responses (n = 66) showed ‘Lack of support’ as a social work value describing their manager's lack of support, unsupportive relationships within their work group, and a health-care system putting business principles before care resulting in job dissatisfaction and nurse turnover. These findings are examples of a ‘complex'/‘wicked’ problem and as such will resist simple solutions to the presenting issues. The dialogic process such as Open Space Technology and Talking Circles should be considered as potentially suitable to the needs of nurses.

Ancillary