Date Presented

Spring 4-2011

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

Ellen Deluca

Second Advisor

Kim Ayscue

Third Advisor

Nancy Cowden


The goal of this study is to describe staff satisfaction and role challenges among Registered Nurses (RN’s) and Emergency Department technicians in a 43 bed Emergency Department (ED) at a community hospital. This is an exploratory study to determine the factors that create an efficient ED, from staffs perspective, to facilitate improvement for other Emergency Departments. Four RN’s were interviewed, including at least one manager, and ED staff completed a survey to determine role challenges involved in the triage process, perceptions of qualifications needed for triage, and overall satisfaction with the comprehensive triage method used in this setting. Surveys were analyzed for themes using Chi Square and Crosstabs analysis using SPSS software. Coding method and statistical evaluation of survey data were done with the assistance of a statistical expert. Several significant findings were noted. Technicians felt less autonomous than nurses in triage, but wished they could triage more often. Nurses felt that technicians could not triage. All agreed that experience is the most important factor, and this was supported by interviews. Overall, role challenges are certainly present, and all staff would like opportunities for experience to improve their performance.

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