Nursing Assistant Empowerment Linked to Family Perceptions of Service Quality

September 12, 2014 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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​Family member empowerment in managerial decision making is linked to better family-perceived service quality, but employee empowerment—especially of nursing assistants—has an even stronger correlation, found a study in the August 2014 Journal of Applied Gerontology. The researchers surveyed employees and family members associated with 33 nursing homes. Family members ranked each of nine service quality items on a scale of 1 to 5. For example, two items were "Staff treat my family member with respect" and "I receive satisfactory answers to questions from staff." Researchers measured family members' empowerment by asking them to rate, on a scale of 1 to 5, the degree of influence they had regarding decisions in seven categories: hiring nursing staff, hiring a new administrator, expanding facilities, making changes to services offered, planning the menu, choosing resident activities, and determining standards of care.

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