Bedside Nursing Research Project

An important nursing workforce concern is the shortage of nurses continuing to work at the beside. To address this concern,  the Nursing Workforce Summit Retention/Recruitment Action Team is conducting a qualitative research project to ascertain the key factors contributing to bedside nurse longevity. They will be interviewing nurse managers and staff members who have longevity at the bedside and on their particular units. The research will be published and disseminated in presentations and publications.

The Researcher

Mary Hancock

Dr. Mary Hancock, Associate Professor of Nursing, Shepherd University School of Nursing is the lead investigator for this project as she has experience in qualitative research and a keen interest in nursing workforce concerns. She is an Editorial Advisory Board member of the peer-reviewed journal, The Qualitative Report, reviewing qualitative research from researchers across the globe.  She has also published and presented her qualitative research methodology. Dr. Hancock also serves on the RN Residency Program Advisory Board for Winchester Medical Center's RN Residency Program in Winchester, VA focusing on assisting new graduate nurses in transitioning to professional practice to keep the new graduate at the patient's bedside.

Mary E. Hancock, PhD, RNC-OB

Status of the Study

The Participant Interview phase is complete. The data gathered is being analyzed with results expected by the end of the year and reported at the next Nursing Workforce Summit, Spring 2021.

Thank YOU to all the wonderful bedside nurses who participated in this Study!

 Study Preliminary Results

Call for Participants is Complete

Future of Nursing West Virginia Coalition Bedside Nurses Retention Study

Are you a registered nurse (RN) currently working in an acute care facility in the state of West Virginia? Have you worked on the same hospital unit for five (5) or more years?

If you answered yes, please consider participating in Future of Nursing West Virginia Coalition Bedside Nurses Retention Study. The study will be conducted via email. You will be asked several open-ended questions on the topic of nurse retention. After typing in your answers to the questions, I may respond asking for clarification to your answer(s). Please reply to ensure I understand your answers to the interview questions. That’s it! Your answers will provide the state with much needed information to retain nurses at the bedside.

Please review the attached informed consent.

If you wish to participate, please email and state: I have read the informed consent and I agree to participate in this study. I understand I can withdraw from this study at any time.

Thank you!

Mary Hancock, PhD, RNC-OB

Principal Investigator


Mary E. Hancock, PhD, RNC-OB

Associate Professor of Nursing

AWHONN WV Section Chair

Shepherd University School of Nursing

College of Nursing, Education, & Health Sciences

PO Box 5000

Shepherdstown, WV 25443-5000

(304) 876-5688


Informed Consent: Future of West Virginia coalition bedside RN retention study


 My name is Dr. Mary Hancock and I am an Associate Professor of Nursing at Shepherd University.  My research assistant, Dr. Trisha Petite, and I are conducting a study on the retention of bedside nurses within the state of West Virginia. This study is being performed in conjunction with the Future of West Virginia Nursing Coalition (  

 Expectations and Time Commitment:

Your participation will involve answering a series of questions about your experience as a bedside nurse via email. You are expected to answer the research questions by typing in your responses in your own words. Your time commitment is directly dependent on the length of time you spend answering each research question. I or my research assistant may contact you after reading your responses asking for clarification of your responses. Once our email conversation has reached its natural conclusion, you will receive a thank-you email from the researchers.

 Recording of Data:

Your responses to the research questions will be in an email. When the study ends, your responses will be de-identified prior to data analysis. Our discussion will be analyzed by the principal investigator and the research assistant only. The printed discussions will be held for three (3) years in the principal investigator’s home office in a locked filing cabinet. When the three-year time frame ends, the printed discussions and data analysis will be shredded, electronic copies will be deleted, and any other hard copies will be destroyed. 

 Withdrawal Procedures:

You can end your participation in the study at any time prior to, during, or after the study. You will need to send the researcher an email stating you wish to end your participation in the research study. A confirmation response email will be sent to ensure you wish to end your participation. Upon receipt of your response to the confirmation email, you will be terminated from the study. If you have participated in the email discussions, your answers to the research questions will be deleted and will not be used in data analysis.

 Termination from Study by Researcher:

You may be terminated from the study by the researcher for the following reasons: (a) no response to the email questions, (b) discussion responses using threatening language and emoticons, such as curse words and typing in all capital letters indicating shouting, and (c) not answering all research questions. You will receive an email from the researcher indicating you are terminated from the study and why. Any answers to the research questions will be deleted and will not be used in data analysis.

 You can decide to be a part of this study or not. Once you start, you can withdraw from the study at any time without any penalty or loss of benefits. The results of the research study may be published but your identity will remain confidential and your name will not be made known to any outside party.

In this research, there are no foreseeable risks to you to participate in this study.

Although there may be no direct benefit to you, a possible benefit from your being part of this study is providing your viewpoint in how the state of West Virginia can retain bedside nurses to potentially alleviate the nursing shortage within the state. There is no cost to you to participate. 

 If you have any questions about the research study, please call me at (304) 876-5688 or contact me via email at For questions about your rights as a study participant, or any concerns or complaints, please contact the Shepherd University Institutional Review Board at

As a participant in this study, you should understand the following:

 1.    You may decide not to be part of this study or you may want to withdraw from the study at any time. If you want to withdraw, you can do so without any problems.

2.    Your identity will be kept confidential; the researcher has fully explained the nature of the research study and has answered all of your questions and concerns.

3.    Your email research question answers and responses will be recorded in an email account specific for this study. The researcher will develop a way to code the data to assure that your name is protected.

4.    You understand that the information from the emails will be printed for data analysis.

5.    Data will be kept in a secure and locked area. The data will be kept for three years, and then destroyed.

6.    The results of this study may be published.

  If you wish to participate in this study, please send an email to: and state in the body of your email “I have read the informed consent and I agree to participate in this study. I understand I can withdraw from this study at any time”. A confirmation email will be sent as a reply to confirm your participation. Once you confirm your participation, the demographic and interview questions will be emailed to you.

 Thank you for participating in this important study!


 Mary Hancock, PhD, RNC-OB

Principal Investigator