Essay - Registered Nurses and Mandatory Overtime Introduction the United States is...

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Registered Nurses and Mandatory Overtime


The United States is experiencing a huge short*****ge in reg*****tered nurses who constitute the backbone of the health care sector. As a n*****tion with an aging population and around 1/3rd of the registered nurses above fifty, *****re is currently a 15% unfilled v*****cancy for RN, which ***** slated to increase further to 20% by 2020. [Gorenberg]. Compounding the problem is ***** increasing trend of downsizing by which many hospitals have reduced their nursing staff. Under the present scenario of an ***** population requiring ********** hospitalization, a dearth of nursing staff only translates ***** more burden on ***** limited number of Nursing staff. In ***** hospitals, mandatory overtime is a comm***** trend and nurses are literally *****ced to work ***** or lose their benefits or, even w*****se, risk being fired. Though several studies have indicated dangerous consequences ***** ***** overtime, it is unfortunate that not much has been done to avoid this and Nurses continue to be explo*****ed. Despite evidence from studies suggesting the dangers involved, only a few states have passed regulations against m*****atory overtime for nurses while in most states the working hours of nurses is largely unregulated. A brief overview of ***** problem and some studies pertaining to it would provide us *****tter insight.

***** Overtime

With ***** number of patients requiring inpatient c*****, nationwide, hospitals are faced with a stiff resource crisis. Inv*****riably, this shortage of ***** is met ***** implementing m*****a*****ry overtime ***** for the nursing staff. However, this has proved to be an un*****y ********** dangerous practice affecting the quality of patient care as well as overburdening the ***** staff. Providing extended ***** of service on a regular basis, nurses become tired and stressed out which ***** ***** increases the attrition rate but also affects the outcome of the patient. Foley of ***** *****NA says, "By far the riskiest result of understaffing is the abuse ***** mandatory ***** as a staffing tool," [Robert Steinbrook]. Over extended, burnt out and even underpaid, nurses develop job d*****satisfaction ***** ***** statistics indicate one out of five nurses are contemplating on quitting the profession altoge*****r. Further the increasing patient/ nurse ratio directly implies a serious compromise on personal ***** to *****s. Let us now look into some recent research ***** that also confirm the negative effects of ***** overwork among nurses.

Quality ***** Patient Care

Evidence ***** ***** studies suggest that the quality of patient care is considerably compromised by continuo***** mandatory overtime duty allocation for nurses. "Physiological factors such as fatigue, system variables such as increased work intensity, or a combin*****tion of fatigue and ***** work intensity may contri*****e to the errors ***** near ***** we observed," [CAN]. A nationwide study conducted by the California Nurses Association ***** indicated ***** nursing errors can be *****ed if ***** working hours are ***** ***** a healthy maximum of 8 hours. As per the research ***** ***** work for more than 12.5 ***** on a d*****y ***** thrice as likely to commit ***** compared *****


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