Study Shows Supportive Work Environments Key to Nurse Retention

June 5, 2024
Meanwhile, symptoms of depression were linked to nurses planning to leave, exacerbating the existing shortage of nurses and impacting patient care.

A study conducted at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic shows that coworker and employer support act as strong predictors of nurses planning to stay in their jobs, while symptoms of depression are linked to nurses planning to leave. NYU's website has the news.

The COVID-19 pandemic “exacerbated stress and burnout among nurses” because of the intense working conditions brought on. Many nurses left their jobs, which made shortages even more of a problem than they already were. Turnover and inadequate nurse staffing are associated with “worse quality of care for patients, poor health for fellow nurses, and increased costs for health systems.”

Researchers at NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing surveyed 629 U.S. nurses during the summer of 2020 to try to determine what made nurses want to stay or leave their positions. They found that “the strongest factor predicting whether nurses intended to remain in their roles was having support systems at work. Nurses who felt supported by their colleagues were nearly twice as likely to want to stay in their jobs compared with those who didn’t feel as supported, while nurses who felt supported by their organization were 2.4 times more likely to say they would stay.”

Symptoms of depression were associated with nurses leaving their jobs. Mild symptoms of depression made nurses 50% less likely to say they plan to stay in their jobs, and nurses with moderate or severe symptoms of depression were 73% less likely.

About the Author

Matt MacKenzie | Associate Editor

Matt is Associate Editor for Healthcare Purchasing News.