• healthcare costs;
  • long-term care;
  • nursing;
  • nursing homes;
  • nursing role;
  • phenomenology;
  • residential care

The difficulties faced in the recruitment and retention of nursing staff in nursing homes for older people are an international challenge. It is therefore essential that the causes of nurses’ reluctance to work in these settings are determined. This paper considers the influence that multiple-source care funding issues have on nursing home nurses’ experiences and views regarding the practice and appeal of the role. The methodology for this study was hermeneutic phenomenology. Thirteen nurses from seven nursing homes in the North East of England were interviewed in a sequence of up to five interviews and data were analysed using a literary analysis method. Findings indicate that participants are uncomfortable with the business aspects that funding issues bring to their role. The primary difficulties faced are: tensions between care issues and funding issues; challenges associated with ‘selling beds’; and coping with self-funding residents’ changing expectations of care. The findings of the study suggest that multiple-source care funding systems that operate in nursing homes for older people pose challenges to nursing home nurses. Some of these challenges may impact on their recruitment and retention.