New survey uncovers how insomnia affects job performance and safety

Minneapolis, MN -- June 15, 2007 -- Alertness Solutions presented results of a new survey this week at the annual SLEEP meeting showing the significant impact our 24/7 culture is having on healthcare professionals job performance and patient safety. The survey of 2,082 nurses found that more than one quarter of nurses (27.23%) suffered from insomnia; 32.10% had difficulty staying asleep, 12.52% had trouble falling asleep, and 55.38% suffered from a combination of both symptoms. To our knowledge, this is the first study looking at how insomnia in healthcare professionals affects their job performance. The findings revealed that insomnia is attributed to a significant increase in medication dispensing errors, charting deviations from standard practice and falling asleep unintentionally at work. The survey also found that despite the significant impact of their insomnia, only 30% of those surveyed sought professional care to address the problem.

The pressure of shift work and the high demands of our round the clock society, often result in the development of insomnia, which is a significant contributing factor to workplace errors that may compromise safety, said Dr. Mark Rosekind, president and chief scientist of Alertness Solutions, who conducted the survey. The results from this study show that insomnia affects workplace productivity, performance and safety, regardless of the type of insomnia experienced. Yet in spite of the significant effects that were reported, the insomnia is rarely being addressed.

Survey Findings

  • Medication dispensing errors were reported more frequently in nurses experiencing difficulty staying asleep, characterized by nighttime awakenings, (29.67%, p<.01) than those who were good sleepers (18.75%).
  • Charting deviations from standard practice were more frequently reported by nurses experiencing difficulty falling asleep (45.07%, p<.01), staying asleep (41.76%, p<.001) and a combin

Contact: Liz Frank
WeissComm Partners

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