All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Larry R Hearld

Advisory Committee Members

Stephen J O'Connor

William Opoku-Agyeman

Jennifer Richards

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Executive Doctor of Science (DSc) School of Health Professions


This study examined the relationship between the departmental work environment and patient safety outcomes to determine if there were particular subcomponents of a department’s work environment that had a more significant impact on patient safety outcomes. The work environment was defined as the culture of an individual nursing department which consisted of the employee’s perception of engagement and patient safety culture. The research was informed by the commitment-based theory. Based on this theory, it was predicted that a team-based approach in the work environment would lead to a learning and positive environment, which would be positively associated with quality of care. The findings suggest that there are subcomponents of the work environment that are more impactful on patient safety outcomes. Specifically as employee’s perception of workload and pace improves, falls with injury and pressure ulcers reduce. The findings could provide insights to hospitals focused on improving patient safety outcomes. The study was based on data from two hospitals in one community. Therefore, further research could be beneficial to corroborate and expand on these results.



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