Mandating nurse staffing ratios
In fact, it did meet with lots of resistance since hospitals now had to hire new nurses, which would skyrocket costs. Thankfully, the laws were changed and today, in California the Med Surg Nursing ratio is one nurse per five patients.How can it be safe for one nurse taking care of 13 patients? Safety Explained Through Research Research from Linda H.Executive Michael Brookshire, a partner in consulting firm Bain & Co., states in an interview with Modern Health “There are ways to deliver very high quality care with lean staffing levels.” As evidenced by his profile on Linked In, Michael Brookshire is not a nurse.Nor does he have any experience working in a hospital. Aiken’s extensive research on nurse staffing ratios.The analysis of 845 patients found that patients were 95 percent more likely to survive when nurses followed a hospital-mandated patient-nurse ratio.Studies are not limited to the United States but are global.Aiken, a professor at University of Pennsylvania, has shown links between California’s nurse staffing law and better patient outcomes.
A legislative committee hearing on some of the bills may be held as soon as Wednesday, March 6.
A study by Mc Hugh et al in 2011, found this not to be true.
Aikin also published a study in 2002 where she found that in hospitals with high nurse patient ratios surgical patients experienced higher risk for mortality. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has also acknowledged the link between nurse staffing ratios and patient safety.
Media headlines boast “Implementing mandated nurse-to-patient staffing ratios would cost Massachusetts providers an estimated 6 million to 9 million a year, net relatively minimal savings and have an insignificant impact on quality, according to a new analysis from the Massachusetts Health Policy Commission.” An independent state agency that monitors hospital spending stated that it would cost billions.
Perhaps these headlines are what swayed voters away from passing safer staffing mandates.