This essay Nurse Staffing Issues and Patient Care Quality looks into delivery of high quality patient care which is highly dependent on nurse to patient ratios in a given hospital set up. Higher rates of poor patient outcomes are experienced in hospitals with low nurse staffing levels…
From the paper it is clear that there are various factors which have contributed to reduced staffing levels in nursing. The nationwide gap between the number of available positions and the registered nurses qualified and willing to fill them is increasing. The needs of today’s higher acuity patients for more care contributes to the staffing crisis.
As the research stresses poor remuneration of registered nurses have prompted most of them to practice in the private sector and neglect the public sector which serves majority of people in the population. Patients’ higher acuity calls for skilled nurses who can give them specialized care they need. The number of qualified nurses to give such care is small contributing to the gap. In policy making, there is a misconceived perception that hiring fewer nurses can reduce the costs and increase profitability in the health care sector. However, increasing the nursing staff in a hospital leads to higher quality patient care and hence increased profits. Adequate staffing and balanced workloads are central to achieving good outcomes in nursing. The problems associated with inadequate staffing of nurses include heavy workload leading to burn out and hence poor health care delivery. Adverse events such as nosocomial infections, shock and failure to rescue patients needing intensive care are some of the problems associated with inadequate nurse staffing in hospitals. ...
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