Staffing in Nursing Capstone Project

Pages: 15 (4391 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Health - Nursing

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] After some five years of the placement of California law, nurses were very optimistic regarding their ratios. According to an analyst, the ratio law was a success and it was commonly witnessed that there was an increment in the total amount of RNs licensed in the state of California after the implementation of the law, also there was a decrement in the rate of turnover because of a gain in patient satisfaction towards the hospital management. The law also improved patient safety greatly as well as saved the lives of many patients, made nurses to be a much stronger advocate for their respective patient and also towards the overall career of nursing.

Hospitals, though are not yet convinced especially since there exists no conclusive evidence regarding if the ratios have really reduced errors or improved care. A study in this regard suggested that if a nurse is to be designated to more than for patients at the same time then the risk of fatality towards the patients goes up by seven percent for every additional patient involved.

This means that if the risk for fatality for every patient goes up seven percent when a single nurse is looking after five patients at the same time then it goes to forty two percent for every patient when that same nurse is looking after ten patients at the same time. This shows the extreme amount of risks involved in the field of nursing and also that if a single nurse is dedicated towards more than its respective share of work then it is bound to do more mistakes than usual and some of these might result as fatal for the patients.

Common mishaps related to the nurses when they are assigned more patients at the same time include giving the wrong medicine to the patient, this sort of action could worsen the condition of the patient greatly and could determine if it will live or die, also the nurses might not be present for the patient in times of emergency when the patient needs help, this could also be a fatal error from the side of nurses and can be easily the cause of death for the patient.

Some other mishaps done by the nurses are as follows, the patient may fall very easily since it requires getting up on its own for restroom and if the nurse is not there for help. "Nurses are commonly known to reply to the patients that they don't want to bother them just so they can avoid their duty of service" (Blegen, 2011).

It is recommended that checking on the patient must be done every hour during daytime and after every two hours during night, If the nurse asks the patient if it wants to go to the restroom or if it makes sure that the television remote or tissues are within the reach of the patient then this simple factor could reduce the amount of patient falls by fifty percent.

This is the reason many of the hospitals have implemented the concept of hourly rounding. According to data some thirty percent decrease was recorded in patient falls inside two months at various different hospitals after the implementation of hourly rounding at the oncology and medical surgical unit. Some hospitals even recorded a sixty five percent decrement in fall rate mainly due to the rounding done by nurses at regular intervals.

Spread of infections is also a vital mishap which could be done on behalf of the nurse who is assigned more duty than what it is supposed to handle, this error is also very common in overcrowded hospitals and were the nurses often don't bother taking proper care of the patients therefore it is regarded as one of the major negative factors which can be associated with shortage of nurses at any given hospital or medical centre.

Here, hand hygiene is very important for the prevention of infectious diseases, as a guideline nurses must disinfect all of the equipment as well as other important items at their disposal in order to ensure that there is no spread of disease. Nurses are also told to wear proper personal protective equipment during surgery or when performing patient care, this practice is even more important to perform when the nurse is operating on a patient who is diagnosed with any fatal virus or disease such as HIV.

There are various different best-practices interventions that can be applied by nurses so that they can reduce the chances of any spread in infection at the hospital, this includes keeping appropriate hand hygiene, usage of chlorhexidine for the purpose of skin preparation and so on.

The nurses should also ensure that full barrier precautions are done and a proper sterile field is maintained at insertion. In order to prevent pneumonia, nurses should always keep the bed's head elevated and do daily oral care by using chlorexidine. According to various clinicians, a better success rate in regards to safety can be achieved if the nurses on duty could identify hazardous elements on the spot and properly address those risks so that they may not infect anyone in its premises.

On their behalf, the nurses should also take more time in assisting their subordinates so that they can properly learn from their experiences, this could greatly benefit the new recruits in the field of nursing and could also help them handle tough situations in a rather easy manner. Nurses should also give guidelines to their apprentices on how to handle more than one patient at the same time and what are the important techniques and tips that may save lives at critical moments. It is commonly found that the gravest of problems arise from the simplest of mistakes on behalf of the nurses or doctors and therefore it is very important for all the medical personnel to be good in their basics and learn to identify the problem early on before it is exaggerated to a certain level.

For nurses, it is very important to be properly dressed, used sterilized equipments, give proper time to their patients, be more helpful not only to their subordinates but to their respective seniors, be vigilant in case of any outbreak, emergency or any other catastrophic event and this is why so much importance is given to them at all levels in the hospital.

2. Positive aspects of proper nurse staffing

Proper staffing results in a broad reduction in the relative risks of mortality related with hospital treatment as well as more attention towards every individual patient. According to a research relative to the field of nursing, by adding one RN FTE per patient a hospital eliminated sixteen percent of its patient related deaths. By properly examining patient and workload occupancy at large and prominent urban hospitals, various researchers concluded that even a little increment in the nurse-to-patient ratio could lead towards an increased rate in patient adverse events. This study found out that just a 0.1% increase could lead towards a twenty eight percent increment in the adverse events. The main conclusion here also pointed out that hospitals must initiate different processes in order to avoid operating during over capacity in order to decline adverse patient outcomes.

A survey concluded that the nurses reporting greater workloads are much more likely to show more frequent medical errors during their practice and the count of patient falls is also increased as compared to their previous years when their workload was low therefore if the concept of timesharing is introduced in the working environment for nurses then it could greatly help every person involved. Timesharing differs from work shifts as the nurse could easily take a break during its work time and appoint a subordinate or a colleague for the care of the patient on a temporary basis. Researches also suggests that the patients are often more prone to fatal circumstances when the nurse is out on a break even for five minutes, therefore proper appliance of timesharing could result in the saving of many lives.

It is also important for a nurse to properly state the amount of working hours it can dedicate to its field of work, for those hospitals which gave this option to its working staff showed a better result in the performances of its nurses alongside a better record of patient care. It has been statistically determined that the chances of making an error at a shift which is twelve hours long is as much as three times greater as compared to a shift which is about eight hours or less for the nurse. The institute of Medicine recommends that shifts for nurses should always be less than twelve hours during any twenty… [END OF PREVIEW]

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