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Mandated staffing ratios: legislated minimum RN staffing rations vs Acuity-based flexible matrices established through collabora - Essay Example
Pages 5 (1255 words)
Mandated Staffing Ratios (Name) (Institution) Mandated staffing ratios Introduction Different hospitals have been adopting different nurse staffing systems depending on different factors. Ratio staffing involves specific RN-to-patient ratio. For instance, 1:2 is a ratio whereby one nurse is assigned to two patients…
This legislation was sponsored by the California Nurses Association. The peak of a nurse’s concern over adequate staffing reached the public, and forced staffing changes for the better. Other states followed suit, introducing bills pertaining to staffing initiatives in their state legislatures. Minimum ratios for critical care units were already in effect (Perrin & McGhee, 2008). These included hospital, intensive care units and operating rooms. Initially, management of hospitals could staff nurses across units in a flexible manner. A controversy arose regarding the effectiveness of the mandated staffing ratios legislation. This essay analyses the merits and demerits of mandated staffing ratios compared to acuity-based, flexible matrices established, through collaborative governance processes. Discussion Mandated staffing ratios are said to limit hospitals’ flexibility in staffing. They prevent management from customizing staffing levels to patient needs. Besides, technology advanced hospitals may have difficulties in substituting technology for nurses appropriately. Opponents of the mandated staffing ratios have expressed their fears that the minimum staffing ratios would become the average staffing ratio, as hospitals may be tempted to reduce their staffing to the lowest level required by the legislation (Perrin & McGhee, 2008). ...