Nurses' perception and judgment of patients' behavior as a problem;
There is a fairly common tendency among some nurses to label some patients as being problem“ patients. These patients tend to be seen by the nurse as demanding, complaining, bidding for attention, or simply uncooperative0 The present investigation was concerned with the identification and measurement of this tendency in nurses and its possible relationship to other personality variables. The specific purposes of this study were: (1) To develop and test a method for measuring the tendency among nurses to perceive, judge, and label patients’ behavior as a “problem0“ (2) To determine if there is any correlation between the tendency to perceive and label patients’ behavior as a problem and interpersonal personality characteristics as measured by the ICL°. The author constructed an inventory to measure nurses’ perception and judgment of patients’ problem behavior on the basis of descriptive items. The Opinionnaire on Patient Behavior (OPB) is composed of 26 affirmatively phrased and 26 negatively phrased items that describe various patient behaviors. A respondent agrees or disagrees with each item indicating whether the behavior constitutes a problem. LaForge and SuczekTs (1955) Interpersonal Check List was used to measure personality in interpersonal terms. Each subject received a score on Dominance-submission and on Hostility-love. The sample consisted of 79 registered, graduate nurses working in six general medical-surgical hospitals in Southwestern Idaho. These nurses were graduates of associate degree, diploma, or baccalaureate schools of nursing and their ages ranged from 20 to over 50 years of age. The range of experience in nursing was from 1 to 25 years. The OPB mean score was 96.34, the standard deviation was 22.79. The range was from 55 to 145. The ICL mean score for the Dominance variable was 1.53, Lov was 3.39. These mean scores and standard deviations were higher than those listed by LaForge (1963) for a sample of 92 female beginning psychology students. Pearson product-moment correlations were calculated between the OPB total scores and the ICL raw scores on the Dominance, Love, Intensity, and Number of Items Checked variables. The correlations were low but significant. The Opinionnaire on Patient Behavior and Dominance correlations was - .31. Unexpectedly, nurses who tended to score higher on the Dominance variable tended to score lower on the Opinionnaire on Patient Behavior. The more domineering person does not tend to label and perceive patients’ behavior as a problem. The Opinionnaire on Patient Behavior and Love correlation was .38, which indicated that nurses who score higher on the Opinionnaire on Patient Behavior tend to perceive themselves more as a loving person. The correlations were low but significant, so did not show apparent strong relationships between interpersonal personality characteristics and the tendency to perceive patients’ behavior as a problem. Doubts have been raised concerning the validity of the instrument developed as a method for assessing the tendency to perceive, judge, and label patients’ behavior as problem behavior. Possible reasons for the low correlations were discussed.
University of Utah;
Communication; Nurse-Patient Relations;
University of Utah;
Relation-Is Version Of
Digital reproduction of “Nurses' perception and judgment of patients' behavior as a problem.” Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library. Print version of “Nurses' perception and judgment of patients' behavior as a problem.” available at J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collection. RT2.5 1966 .L44.