The quality of care affects patients’ satisfaction. To provide high quality care, nurses face ethical challenges in daily practice. Moral sensitivity is the first phase in moral implementation. This study aimed to determine the relationship between nurses’ moral sensitivity and patients’ satisfaction in medical wards.
In descriptive correlational study 198 nurses and 198 patients in 17 medical wards filled out the "Moral Sensitivity Questionnaire (MSQ)" and "Patient Satisfaction with Nursing Care Quality Questionnaire (PSNCQQ)", respectively. Nurses were sampled by the census method. For each nurse, a patient was selected randomly from the same ward. Data were analyzed using SPSS ver13.
The highest scores were in the dimensions of "Relational orientation" and "Following the rules", and the lowest scores were in the dimensions of "Autonomy" and "Experiencing moral conflicts". The highest level of patients’ satisfaction was with "nurses’ professional performance" 3.98 (1.09), and the lowest level was with "nurses’ routine work" 2.69 (1.22). There was no significant relationship between the mean of patient satisfaction and moral sensitivity of nurses.
Considering that nurses had a higher score in dimension of "Following the rules" and a lower score in dimension of "Autonomy", It seems ethical performance in the real situation is not merely due to the nurses’ moral sensitivity and It seems the complexity of the organization causes nurses face difficulties in making decisions related to clinical practice; therefore, policy makers in the health system should be able to identify barriers.
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