How Does Mindfulness Affect Registered Nurses Practicing in Acute Care Settings? A Study of the Lived Experiences of Nurses After Participating in a Mindfulness Program
Psychological well-being of nurses is necessary to protect the overall care of themselves, as well as their patients. This is especially concerning given the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. There are several research studies on mindfulness for RNs and its impact on psychological health and well-being. There is limited research on how nurses may use mindfulness during patient care.
The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of mindfulness education and practice on helping RNs to develop self-care skills and to apply mindfulness in the clinical setting.
This was an exploratory mixed method design including quantitative (pilot study) and qualitative methods. Upon completion of a 4-week course on mindfulness practices, focus groups were held with the seven participants who completed the program. Open-ended, semi-structured interviews were held 1 week and then 3 months post-intervention. A constant comparative method and thematic analysis were utilized to analyze the data.
Four themes were identified; (1) using mindfulness to calm down one’s emotional response in the clinical setting; (2) awareness; (3) loving yourself; and (4) self-care. Nurses reported increased awareness and were able to use the technique of mindfulness practice during patient care.
The findings of this study validate the benefits of mindfulness for self-care. Nurses were able to utilize mindfulness while caring for patients in different settings and during difficult patient situations, including in Behavioral Health. Further research is needed longitudinally, to explore how mindfulness can be practiced and utilized to improve outcomes in patient care.
Rosen, J., & Penque, S. (2022). How does mindfulness affect registered nurses practicing in acute care settings? A study of the lived experiences of nurses after participating in a mindfulness program. Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, 10783903221108767. Doi.org/10.1177/10783903221108767
Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association