A Comparison of Characteristics of Nurses' Aides Rated by Nursing Home Residents on Effectiveness As Psychological Care-Givers
Date of Award
Dissertation - Restricted
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Topetzes, Nick J.
The psychological needs of nursing home residents are increasingly recognized as an important facet of their total health needs. Due to the high amount of interpersonal involvement with residents by nurses' aides, they are potentially the most important resource for improving psychological care, and thus the well-being of nursing home residents. As a first step toward designing a training program which could be used to improve psychological care-giving skills in aides and as a basis for possible modifications in priorities for hiring, characteristics which are related to effective care-giving must be identified. As it is the residents who are most affected by the care given by aides, it is the residents' judgment of whom they perceive as effective care-givers which is of primary interest. Thus, this study was an attempt to identify differences in personality traits as measured by the Adjective Check List (ACL) and background characteristics between aides identified as effective or noneffective in psychological care-giving with the judgment as to effectiveness beging done by the residents. Eighty-two aides in two private, religiously affiliated nursing homes were used as subjects. One hypothesis tested was that no significant differences exist on the ACL personality variables among groups of aides rated as effective and noneffective. Other hypotheses posited no significant differences in ratings as effective between cohort groups based on eight background variables. In order to test the hypotheses, analysis of variance procedures were performed on each of the personality and background variables. Results of these analyses indicated the fact that a difference was found on only one ACL scale. This difference was not significant enough to assure there are significant personality differences between effective and noneffective aides. However, differences were indicated on the variables of age and marital status, with aides over 27 years of age and married aides being rated significantly more effective than younger and nonmarried groups.