Queenella Amanda M. Ortiz, RN; Shirley P. Whisenhunt, RN, DNM;
Shally Mar V. Baquiran, RN; Roberto C. Sombillo, RN, MHA, PhD

St. Luke’s Medical Center Global City


Background of the Study

In the Philippines, it is common knowledge that nurses normally render eight (8) to twelve (12) hour shifts. However, there is little regard as to the composition of a nurse’s shift. The researchers sought to determine what are the activities performed by nurses in a shift and the amount of time spent on each activity.


The objective of the study was to determine significant activities perform by nurses in an eight (8) hour shift, the average time spent in each of the activities including the top four (4) activities for each shift.



The had study utilized a Time and Motion design which have measured the time it takes a nurse to complete a task at a normal pace. The study was conducted in a private - tertiary hospital. Direct observation of work activities were done for twenty-four (24) hours over three (3) shifts. The researchers have used purposive sampling technique that entails choosing the respondents on the basis of a set criteria. A task log tool was utilized to document the observations and was eventually classified according to taxonomy of nursing activities. Data were encoded and analyzed. Descriptive statistics was used to obtain values reflecting frequencies, mean and standard deviation.


The activities identified were inter-professional communication (1 hour and 52 minutes), nursing procedures (1 hour and 38 minutes), documentation (1 hour and 14 minutes), medication tasks (1 hour and 13 minutes), break (27 minutes), assisting patients (26 minutes), cleaning/organizing/gathering/returning (22 minutes), transit (22 minutes), patient-related communication (11 minutes),  movement (5 minutes) and supervision (2 minutes). Inter-professional communication, nursing procedures, medication tasks and documentation consistently were the top four (4) activities for both the AM and PM shifts. However, this proves to be different for the night shift wherein documentation had most of a nurse’s time which is closely followed by nursing procedures,  inter-professional communication and medication tasks respectively.



The study recommended that nurses to be further trained in time management and goal prioritization. It further recommends a correlational investigation of significant nurse variables like tenure and area of assignment.