The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between the team and unit size and level of nursing teamwork. The sample for the study was 2,265 direct care nursing providers from 53 units in four hospitals. Pearson correlation coefficients were calculated to determine if five variables to measure unit size (average daily census, number of registered nurses, number of nursing assistants [NAs], and number of total staff) correlated with teamwork overall and with five teamwork subscales (trust, team orientation, backup, shared mental model, and leadership). A significant negative correlation was found between nursing teamwork overall and the number of NAs, and average daily census. To optimize nursing unit teamwork, consideration needs to be given to strategies to reduce the size of nursing teams.
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