Accurate assessment of clinical nurses' work environments: response rate needed

Res Nurs Health. 2009 Apr;32(2):229-40. doi: 10.1002/nur.20315.


Improvement of hospital unit work environments is key to quality patient care, productivity, nurse retention, and job satisfaction. Accurate measurement of such environments is necessary prior to introduction and evaluation of improvement structures and strategies. Characteristics and attributes of work environments are group level phenomena. Accurate assessment of these phenomena requires survey response rates of sufficient size to ensure sample representativeness and data that can reliably be aggregated to group level. What is the sufficient response rate? This question was answered through psychometric testing of five random samples from the population of 23 M.D. Anderson Cancer Center clinical units that had 100% response rates on an environmental survey. Response rates of 40% or more had acceptable psychometric properties for unit-specific scales.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Cancer Care Facilities
  • Data Collection / methods
  • Data Collection / standards
  • Efficiency, Organizational
  • Health Facility Environment* / organization & administration
  • Humans
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Needs Assessment / organization & administration*
  • Nursing Administration Research
  • Nursing Methodology Research
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital* / organization & administration
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital* / psychology
  • Organizational Culture
  • Psychometrics
  • Quality of Health Care / organization & administration
  • Sample Size
  • Selection Bias
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*
  • Texas
  • Workplace* / organization & administration
  • Workplace* / psychology