• male nurses;
  • rural female nurses;
  • urban female nurses;
  • acceptance

Purpose: To investigate attitudes of acceptance toward male registered nurses by female registered nurses.

Design: Randomized descriptive design using 105 female registered nurses from a large midwestern state in the US.

Methods: Data were collected using an attitude inventory and analyzed using t test, chi square, Spearman rho, Pearson correlation, Mann-Whitney U and multiple regression tests.

Findings: Acceptance was normally distributed. No difference in acceptance was found between rural and urban participants. The length of time working with a male nurse explained significant variance in acceptance scores. City or town of socialization was not related to acceptance scores. Rural participants were less likely than were urban participants to believe that female nurses are ready to accept large numbers of men into the profession.

Conclusions: The relationship of the distribution of acceptance of male registered nurses found in this study to the perceptions of acceptance by male registered nurses is unclear and requires further investigation.