Date of Award

Fall 12-1-2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science - Human Sciences


Human Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Mitzi Perritt

Second Advisor

Dr, Ray Darville

Third Advisor

Dr. Karen Migl

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Jeri Brittin


This study investigated nurse perspectives on the work impacts of a decentralized inpatient unit model. The study involved two rural acute-care hospitals in rural Nebraska that moved from a centralized to a decentralized inpatient unit design. The researcher conducted focus group discussions with staff and nursing management at both facilities with a total of 28 participants. In addition, the participants completed a 12-item questionnaire using a five-point Likert scale for responding. Focus group discussion and questionnaire were designed to investigate the areas of quality of care, communication, documentation, stress and wellbeing, and transition. Data gathered revealed that on all survey questions but one, a centralized unit design was preferred, with the exception of supporting nurses’ chart documentation. The survey data collected aligned with the focus group findings.

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