Objective: To examine among surgical nurses whether work–role conflict, work–role ambiguity, respect, distress and trust in collaboration due to interactions with family caregivers in the nursing ward are associated with the quality of contact with patients and their families. Methods: A multicentre cross-sectional study was conducted between January and March 2020. Surgical nurses completed a questionnaire recording work–role conflict, work–role ambiguity, sense of respect, distress, trust in collaboration and quality of contact with patients and their families. Data were analysed using correlation analysis, multiple linear regression analysis and mediation regression analysis. Results: A total of 135 nurses completed the questionnaire. The correlation analysis showed significant correlations between nurses’ impaired quality of contact with patients and their families and nurses’ work–role conflicts, work–role ambiguity, trust in collaboration and distress (p < 0.05). The multiple regression analyses corroborated that work–role conflict and distress were significantly and positively associated with impaired quality of contact. Furthermore, mediation regression analysis showed that work–role conflict was associated indirectly and significantly with quality of contact through distress. Conclusion: Work–role conflict due to having family caregivers involved in the care of hospitalised patients is significantly associated with nurses’ distress and quality of contact with patients and their families.