ArticlesSurviving the Perfect Storm: Staff Perceptions of Mandatory OvertimeJacobsen, Catherine BSN, RN; Holson, Deborah BSN, RN; Farley, Jean MSN, RN, CPNP; Charles, Jennell PhD, RN; Suel, Patricia RNAuthor Information Catherine Jacobsen, BSN, RN, Director of Nursing at The Hospital for Sick Children, Washington, DC. Deborah Holson, BSN, RN, is a nurse manager at The Hospital for Sick Children, Washington, DC. Jean Farley, MSN, RN, CPNP, Director of Nursing Education at The Hospital for Sick Children and Clinical Instructor at Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies, Washington, DC. Jennell Charles, PhD, RN, is a nurse researcher at The Hospital for Sick Children, Washington, DC. Patricia Suel, RN, is a nurse manager at The Hospital for Sick Children, Washington, DC. Corresponding author: Jennell Charles, PhD, RN, The Hospital for Sick Children, 1731 Bunker Hill Rd, Washington, DC 20017. JONA's Healthcare Law, Ethics, and Regulation: September 2002 - Volume 4 - Issue 3 - p 57-66 Buy Abstract Historically, mandatory overtime has been used to provide adequate staffing in times of crisis; however, as a result of today’s severe nursing shortage, hospitals and other healthcare institutions are more commonly using mandatory overtime as a daily management tool to meet staffing requirements. This practice has created turmoil between management and staff in providing quality healthcare. Nursing literature describing staff nurses’ views of overtime is limited. This article offers a description of the environment at the Hospital for Sick Children, a private nonprofit rehabilitation and transitional care pediatric hospital in Washington, DC, and the challenges the hospital faces in staffing the patient care units. This article also reports the results of the hospital’s efforts to poll the nursing staff on their opinions regarding both voluntary and mandatory overtime and identifies conditions that influence the nursing staff’s decisions and perceptions about overtime. Survey results will be used to modify existing staffing strategies and implement new staffing policies. © 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.