Older adults’ perception of missed nursing care in Western Australia: A cross-sectional study

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Title

Creating Healthy Work Environment


Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing’s conference


School of Nursing and Midwifery


Sarpong, A. A., Arabiat, D., Gent, L., & Towell-Barnard, A. (2023, February). Older adults’ perception of missed nursing care in Western Australia: A cross-sectional study [Paper presentation]. Creating Healthy Work Environment, Austin, Texas, USA. https://stti.confex.com/stti/chwe23/meetingapp.cgi/Paper/116400


Introduction: Missed nursing care is the omission or delay of any aspect of patient care either fully or partially (Bragadóttir et al., 2016; Kalisch & Williams, 2009). Older adults are among the most vulnerable groups in acute care settings, with more complex care needs due to multiple chronic conditions. Their vulnerability contributes to undesirable patient outcomes such as falls, pressure injuries and hospital acquired infections. When deviation from safe and complete care occurs, missed nursing care can have serious consequences on hospitalized adults (Willis & Brady, 2021).

Aim: To inform hospital workforce policy decisions by showing older adults’ perspectives of the extent and types of missed nursing care in a Western Australian teaching hospital.

Method: The MISSCARE survey-Patient (Kalisch et al., 2014) was used to collect and analyze data from 43 hospitalized older adults aged 65 years and above, admitted for not less than 48 hours and proficient in English language. Descriptive analysis was conducted using IBM SPSS version 28.

Results: The top five (5) most frequently missed nursing care activities reported were mouth care (55.8%), repositioning in bed (34.9%), getting out of bed into a chair (23.3%), ambulation (20.9%) and providing information about test/procedures (19.0%). Overall, majority of older adults (97.7%) rated general nursing care during hospitalization as either good or excellent.

Conclusion: The results shed light on the types and extent of missed nursing care among older adults in acute care settings. Failure to complete nursing care such as mouth care can lead to hospital acquired chest infections or aspiration pneumonia (Bail & Grealish, 2016). The findings offer the need for interventions with purpose to prevent delay or omission of nursing care in older people who are more at risk of unsafe outcomes of hospitalization.

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