Friday, January 05, 2007

Can you force good nursing with quotas?


…Oooo, that irritating peeping sound when IVs are empty. It can go on and on, even if you call for an aide to turn it off or hang more stuff.

….Laura Landro, writing in the WSJ (Dec 13, 2006), says there is ongoing strife between state-mandated nurse/patient ratios and hospital efforts to make do with fewer nurses without compromising care.

…Apparently there is scant evidence that more nurses means better care.

…Most hospitals and nursing societies oppose quotas. The hospitals say if there is a quota and they can’t find the nurses to fill it (half are retiring soon and by 2020, we will be one million nurses low), they might have to close units. In Mass, hospitals support a website on what they are doing. It’s www.patientsfirst.ma.org.

…The nurse unions, of course, support quotas.

…Others, though, say let’s help the nurses we do have be more efficient—cut their paperwork and scut duties.

…The nurse to patient ratio also needs to be set according to how sick the people are.

…An obstetrics nurse also should not be assigned to intensive care. So the type of nurse is important.

…In other words, the ratio would vary by floor or ward, not by state.

…Computer programs are designed to weigh these factors.

…Yay to all this! All HA knows is that good bedside care can make or break a hospital stay and may be a matter of life and death.

…How about some funding for more nursing schools while we are at it? A million-nurse shortfall is gonna smart.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

At Lakeland Regenal Medical Center. It has gotten so bad. On their mother baby unit. They have 1 nurse to every 5 moms. You would think all the moms are well and the babies are too, not the case. Where we were having 6 c-section moms a week to tend to we now have6 to 10 a day. The higher up also thinks the babies shouldn't be counted as patients and the nurses have most of the time 5moms and 5 babies. 1 nursery nurse to take care of all c section babies from the begining, and the vag delivered babies, plus assist in circs, dr's come in and want assistance in getting and returning their babies. At night on top of all the deliveries, they sometimes have up to 15 babies that the mom's don't want them in their rooms, they need the rest. They do have cna's on the floor,but they have up to 15 moms and 15 babies and sometimes 3 and 4 nurses asking them to not only do their work of vitals baby weights, baby baths, getting c section moms up, hearing screens, help with the discharge duties, helping nursing moms, and more, there is definitly not enough help with 2cna's at night not even 3 because one will end up in the nursery and still only 2 on the floor. I've seen them on the floor from 7p to 230a with no breaks waiting for a chance to take a 30 min lunch and off they go till 7am with out stopping. They want to know why Nurses and cna's (pca's) are wanting to leave. The sad part is you see the higher up going on cruises and vacations every other month. Makes you think and when the President gets paid more in 2 weeks that you make in a year of hard work.