The invisible nurse--behind the scenes in an Australian OR.

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THE DWINDLING NUMBER of RNs choosing to work in the OR has been caused by many factors, such as restricted undergraduate exposure to the perioperative experience and fewer postgraduate opportunities. PRESSURE TO IDENTIFY alternative health care workers to replace RNs in the OR is escalating to a point where the role of the perioperative RN, as currently understood, is threatened. FINDINGS from an Australian ethnographic study suggest that both patients and non-nursing colleagues have limited appreciation of the contribution that perioperative nurses make. THE NEED FOR NURSES to take a proactive stance on this subject is discussed within the context of professional and structural change.




Bull, R. M., & Fitzgerald, M. (2004). The invisible nurse--behind the scenes in an Australian OR. AORN Journal, 79(4).

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