What are the implications of mandatory nurse-patient ratios? What, if any, are the alternatives?
Please do not summarize the discussion posted. Respond to the following discussion nurse pt ratios keeping the following questions in mind:
1: Do you think there should be a national law regarding safe nurse to patient ratios or should ratios be regulated by individual hospitals?
2. What are the implications of mandatory nurse-patient ratios? What, if any, are the
3. In the organization that you are working in what are the different nurse/patient ratios?
Nurses have an essential role in the health care system. State-mandated safe-staffing ratios are necessary to ensure the safety of patients and nurses. The increase in health care demands creates stress on the nurse to provide adequate health care to meet all of their needs and to have a proper discharge without readmission. Over the next few years as baby boomers retire and the demand for health care services increase, creates a greater concern for nurse/patient ratio.
The ANA, federal and state governments play an important role in safe staffing. In 2015, the ANA published papers on optimal staffing and patient safety. The article points out that existing nurse staffing systems are often antiquated and inflexible. There are other benefits from staffing models that consider the number of nurses and the nurse-to-patient ratios and can be adjusted to fit those needs. There are many factors that impact the nurse/patient ratio. Some important factors to consider is the skill of the nurse and the acuity of the patient. This is cruel for the patients safety. Some other examples set by the ANA are admission/discharge of patients, support by technology and management and the available resources (American Nurses Association 2015).
Safe staffing in NY- Assembly Bill A1532:
Enacts the “safe staffing for quality care act”- Whats in the proposed law? – Danielle
New York Assembly Bill A1532 supports the safe staffing for quality care act. The bill is currently under committee review. The hospital nurse-to-patient ratios specified in the bill are based on evidence-based recommendations and peer-reviewed research. Nurse-to-patient ratios have a direct impact on the overall quality of care. Safe staffing also reduces available adverse patient outcomes (The New York State Senate, 2017).
The safe staffing for quality care act will require acute care facilities and nursing homes to put into place specific nurse-to-patient ratios in all nursing units. For example, all intensive care units will be staffed two patients per nurse. No nurse can be assigned to more patients outside the set ratio. Hospitals that infringe on the law will face civil penalties. It will also require set minimum staffing requirements. The bill will also require facilities to submit a staffing plan annually and will require acute facilities to maintain staffing records for every shift. Hospitals will not be able to count assistive personnel toward the licensed nurse-to-patient ratio. Nurses will also be able to refuse patient assignments if the assignment exceeds the nurses abilities or if minimum staffing is not being implemented (New York State Nurses Association, n.d).
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