Anat Drach-Zahavy

Anat Drach-Zahavy |Clyto Access

The University of Haifa, Israel

Keynote Speaker

Expertise: Safety- including providers’ safety, patient safety, and effective handover-Promoting nurses' health, and well-being-Inter-disciplinary teamwork


Professor Drach-Zahavy earned her PhD degree in Organizational Psychology at the Technicon, the Israel Institute of Technology. From year 2000, she is academic staff at the Department of nursing, the Faculty of Health, and Welfare Sciences, at the Department of Nursing, the University of Haifa, where she now serves as an Associate Professor. As an Organizational Psychologist, her research tries to understand the challenges that health organizations set before managers regarding management, teamwork, and ward's effectiveness. She is particularly interested in effectiveness in terms of safety, and quality of care. Her This endeavor comes at a time of growing recognition in healthcare that its fundamental challenges are organizational, not merely clinical.



Title: Re-revealing the concept of personal and ward accountability among nurses


The healthcare academic community, and popular media have recently re-revealed a burgeoning interest in accountability amongnurses. Whereas the media repeatedly review eminent healthcare scandals around the globe,capturing demands for accountability across organizational levels, the climate shaped by such scandals has concomitantly re-focused the academic community’s attention in accountability. As Wachter (2013) pointed out, “In the first few years of the patient safety movement, the pendulum swung too far toward systems. It is now swinging back toward individual and collective accountability. The ultimate success of our efforts to prevent harm will depend on ensuring that the pendulum comes to an optimal resting point” (p. 6). This presentation will combine empirical findings from five different studies that explored personal and organizational accountability, and will shed light on theoretical, methodological, and practical implications of accountability for the nursing field.

The first study explored the personality profile of an accountable nurse, and found that among the big-5 personality traits, conscientiousness, agreeableness, and openness to change were positively linked to personal accountability among nurses, neuroticism was negatively linked with it, and extraversion was not linked to nurses' personal accountability. Furthermore, our findings from other three different studies combining qualitative and quantitative methods concluded that nurses do not work in a vacuum, and that nurses' behaviors critically depends also on the climate of accountability in the nursing ward. We found that the interaction between personal and organizational accountability had an impact on nurses' behavior on several aspects (1) performance were highest, and neglect, and missed nursing care scores were lowest under the condition of high personal-high organizational accountability. (2)for exit and voice behaviors: when organizational accountability was low, the higher the personal accountability the higher the nurses’ tendency to exit their job and voice their concerns on ward threats. However, when organizational accountability was high, the higher the personal accountability the lower the nurses’ tendency to exit or voice behaviors. Finally, the fifth study introduces a novel instrument for measuring nurses' accountability.

The findings of these five studies carry implications for nursing theory, research, and practice. Theorteically, they support a meso-level integrative model of accountability, which stresses that the outcomes of personal accountability are critically dependent upon the level of organizational accountability, and only the combination of personal and organizational accountability can be distinctively linked to nurses' behaviors. Methodologically, we introduce a novel instrument for measuring nurses' personal and ward accountability. Practically, the findings provide important pointers for nursing administration and policy makers for ways to promote accountability among nurses.


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