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Implementing a science-based approach for fatigue risk management in nursing

40 months
Approved budget:
Professor Emeritus Philippa Gander
Health issue:
Occupational health
Proposal type:
Lay summary
DHBs are required to manage nurses’ fatigue as a workplace hazard and shift work as a cause of fatigue (HSE Amendment Act, 2002). In this project, Sleep/Wake Research Centre scientists and an Advisory Group of senior stakeholder representatives will launch a new collaborative approach for managing fatigue among hospital-based nurses. The project includes 4 steps: 1) building fatigue awareness and knowledge across the sector; 2) developing an evidence-based approach for evaluating the fatigue risk associated with different rosters, based on a nationwide survey of nurses’ work patterns in 6 practice areas with high a priori risk of fatigue-related error; 3) developing and disseminating a Code of Practice for shift work and fatigue management in hospital-based nursing; and 4) identifying, or advocating for, an agency with ongoing responsibility for fatigue risk management in nursing. Expected benefits include improvements in patient safety and in the safety, health, and retention of nurses.