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The Role of Nursing in Bridging the Gap Between Managers and Physicians in Hospitals

Kaissi, Amer PhD

doi: 10.1097/01.HCM.0000285041.34913.b2

Tension between hospital managers and physicians is at an all-time high. This article builds on a previous work on the culture of managers and physicians and suggests that nurses can play an instrumental role in bridging the gap between these 2 cultures. Several similarities appear between managers' and nurses' cultures, other similarities can be found between physicians' and nurses' cultures, whereas nurses' culture seems to fall somewhat in the middle of the continuum on some other cultural aspects. Therefore, we suggest that nursing can and should play a crucial role in bridging the gap between the worlds of management and medicine. In a way, nurses can act as "translators," who can explain physicians' views to managers and vice versa. Practically, this will mean a better-defined role for nurses in key hospital committees and task forces, a more active role of the chief nursing officer in the Chief Executive Officer-Chief Medical Officer, and, more importantly, better representation of nurses on hospital boards that already have physician members.

Author Affiliations: Department of Health Care Administration, Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas.

Corresponding author: Amer Kaissi, PhD, Department of Health Care Administration, One Trinity Place, #58, San Antonio, TX 78212 (

Copyright © 2008 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.