The Relationship between Moral Distress and Nurses' Turnover Intention in Intensive Care Unit Nurses

  • Tarane Taghavi Larijani Associate Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychiatric Nursing, School of Nursing & Midwifery, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Kurosh Jodaki Ph.D. Candidate in Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Keywords: Moral Distress, Nurses' Turnover Intention, Intensive Care Unit Nurses


Background and Aim: Nurses have a very important and prominent role in the health care system, and turnover of nurses in health care system, disrupts the functioning of the organization. There are many factors that can be associated with the turnover of nursing services. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between moral distress and Nurses' Turnover Intention in intensive care unit nurses.

Materials and Methods: This study is a descriptive-correlational study, which was performed using census sampling on 117 nurses working in the intensive care units of Qom hospitals in 2016. Data were collected using the Hinshaw Anticipated Turnover Scale, and the Jamton 30-Questionnaire. Data were analyzed by SPSS software 16 and descriptive statistics and statistical tests of multivariate logistic regression.

Findings: The results showed that there was a significant relationship between moral distress and the Nurses' Turnover Intention in intensive care units nurses (p=0.03, OR: 2.44). The mean score of moral distress in the participants in the study was 137.53 with a standard deviation of 23.14. Also, the mean score of Nurses' Turnover Intention was 3.44 with a standard deviation of 0.948.

Ethical Considerations: This article is the result of an approved research project at Qum University of Medical Science. During the research process, the university's ethical policies were complied with in accordance with the principles of the Helsinki Declaration, including obtaining informed consent from participant.

Conclusion: According to the results of this study, it is necessary for nurses to pay more attention to moral distress and Nurses' Turnover Intention. Therefore, measures should be taken to reduce ethical challenges, moral distress, and subsequently Nurses' Turnover Intention in the clinical setting.


Cite this article as: Taghavi Larijani T, Jodaki K. The Relationship between Moral Distress and Nurses' Turnover Intention in Intensive Care Unit Nurses. Med Ethics J 2020; 14(45): e6.


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Original/Research Article