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Missed Nursing Care: A Qualitative Study

Kalisch, Beatrice J. PhD, RN, FAAN


The purpose of this study was to determine nursing care regularly missed on medical-surgical units and reasons for missed care. Nine elements of regularly missed nursing care (ambulation, turning, delayed or missed feedings, patient teaching, discharge planning, emotional support, hygiene, intake and output documentation, and surveillance) and 7 themes relative to the reasons for missing this care were reported by nursing staff.

School of Nursing, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Corresponding author: Beatrice J. Kalisch, School of Nursing, University of Michigan, 400 N Ingalls Str, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (e-mail:

The author thanks Suzanne Begeny, MS, RN, and Rebecca Gascoyne, MS, RN, who conducted the initial analyses of the focus groups.

Accepted for publication: December 27, 2005

© 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.