Where nurses are happy so are their patients, suggests research published by the Department of Health, which found staff experience was “closely linked” to good patient experience.
Researchers at the Aston Business School said they found strong links between how trusts scored on experience indicators in the 2007 acute trust inpatient and NHS staff surveys.
For example, where staff had clear and planned goals patients were more likely to report good communication, such as being involved in decisions about their care.
Where there were high levels of bullying, harassment and abuse, patients often reported bad experiences in several areas. Additionally, in organisations where staff said they were considering leaving, there was worse communication with patients.
The researchers said: “Obviously bullying, harassment and abuse, and discrimination, are factors which trusts should be attempting to reduce in any case. Likewise the need for patient confidentiality and sufficient staffing levels are obvious.
“The more striking results are those which are less obvious at first glance: the need for staff to have clear, planned goals being a particularly strong example of this,” they added.
“It supports the intuitive notion that improving the staff experience will improve the patient’s experiences of care,” the department said in its response to the findings.