Nurse Managers’ Perceptions towards the Roles They Play in a Resource- Limited Hospital Setting in Western Kenya

Simon Macharia Kamau


Aim: This report is an excerpt from a wider study on job description of nurse managers. To describe the experiences and perceptions of nurse managers towards the various factors that affect their roles as nurse managers in the hospital.

Methods: This was a qualitative phenomenological design, drawing lived experiences and perceptions of nurse managers. Study was done in February 2011 in a 600 bed public hospital in western Kenya, targeting all the 16 consenting nurse managers working in the institution. Data was collected from a focus group discussion and subjected to content analysis into key points.                                                    Results: Problem Recognition: Nurse as employee, awareness of the demanding job, reflecting. Some respondents disagreed that the job was satisfying to them. Some apprehension was obvious. Commitment: Accepting the role, altruism, duplicating and reciprocating. All respondents agreed that they did work that someone else was supposed to do. Exhaustion: High expectations, lowly appreciated, stagnating but not redundant, wearing out, frustration. Lack of recognition, supplies and equipment came out strongly as limiting factors in the performance of their complex roles. The nurse managers felt generally overworked and were not paid in commensurate.

Discussions: There is great need to clearly outline the nurse managers’ role in the hospital as their job description. Their roles were either complex, multidimensional or both. There is need to equip the nurse managers with leadership skills.

Keywords: Job description(s), Nurse manager(s), Nurse manager(s) role, Perceptions.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3208 ISSN (Online)2225-093X

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