Organizational Ethics in Finnish Intensive Care Units: Staff Perceptions
Nursing Ethics 2002 March; 9(2): 126-136
The purpose of this study was to describe ethical problems that are influenced by organizational factors in Finnish intensive care units (ICUs). The goal was to help nurses and administrators to analyse intensive care work, and to improve nurses' work motivation. Through these means the ultimate goal is to improve the quality of patient care. Data were collected in 35 hospital ICUs by means of the Ethics Environmental Questionnaire (EEQ). This gained access to the population of 1047 Finnish intensive care nurses. The response rate was 77% (n = 814). Data analysis was carried out using SAS-6 statistical software. The results provided scores for the 20 EEQ items. Reliability according to Cronbach's alpha was 0.87. The results revealed that organizational factors in Finnish ICUs have both positive and negative dimensions. Positively, nurses have the opportunity to discuss ethical problems in their work units, whereas, negatively, respondents noted that there is much concern about earning money. Nurses' work in Finnish hospital ICUs is ethically challenging; it is similar to that found in other countries and thereby supports international application of these findings.
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