The benefits of a reduced nurse ratio play a vital role in a nurse’s career and constantly changing positions. With a significant increase in nurse-to-patient ratios across the United States in the past ten years, nurses’ quality of time with their patients improves patient satisfaction and comfort.
So why is it important to practice the correct nurse ratio?
Benefits of Reduced Nurse Ratio to Patients
The patients will always be the nurses’ priority. They are also the reason why practicing the proper nurse ratio must be done . How can patients benefit from this?
- Quality care is given to patients when nurses have the correct number of patients under their supervision. All patients under their care receive the attention needed. No one is left out or forgotten.
- The chances of writing the wrong information in the patient’s chart are small. When a nurse is too busy taking care of other patients, it is possible to write the incorrect information given to all of their patients. No matter how experienced a nurse is, errors happen if they take care of too many patients. The proper nurse ratio can help avoid these situations.
- Readmission is less when nurses take care of the patients correctly. According to studies, nurses in a good work environment versus nurses in a poor working environment (ex., too many patients under their care) have fewer readmitted patients than many patients under them.
- Meeting patient satisfaction is easy when nurses have a reduced number of patients under their supervision. Patients are happier with the quality of care they deliver.
Benefits of Reduced Nurse Ratio to Nurses and Hospitals
Studies show that nurses can benefit significantly if healthcare facilities follow the proper nurse ratio. Not only will it affect their patients, but the quality of health care they deliver as well .
- The benefits of reduced nurse ratio help in decreasing the chances of nursing burnout. It also relieves insomnia, fatigue, depression, irritability, weight gain, and other health risks from being overworked and stressed. Studies of nurses in California say that they experience more burnout and dissatisfaction with their jobs than nurses working with minimum nurse ratios in other states. That said, regulated nurse-to-patient ratios allow nurses to perform better while also maintaining their health.
- Work retention and recruitment of nurses improve when there are minimum nurse ratios. Nurses will stay with their job when stress is less at work. Recruiting new nurses is more accessible when the hospital’s minimum nurse ratios reflect quality care towards their patients.
- Patient mortality and preventable mistakes like patient falls, ulcerations and hospital-related infections decrease to a minimum when there are higher nurse-to-patient ratios. Some fewer patients get sick while in recovery, and post-operation treatment complications are lesser. Medical errors, as well as patient and family complaints, are also avoided in this situation.
- The performance of nurses reflects their work environment. Nurses work better with their co-nurses and doctors. They also participate actively in improving patient care and making decisions in their workplace. In short, nurses become better members of the entire healthcare facility in quality patient care programs.
Why Should Reduced Nursing Ratio Be Applied to all HealthCare Facilities?
Nurses are amazing people! They work hard to help the sick and dying, especially now that we are experiencing the pandemic. And with the increasing number of ill patients, many nurses are caught between taking care of their patients and maintaining their health.
The influx of patients with the new Covid variant had nurses working for long hours with few rest periods. Because of this, nurses give less quality care to patients. They are also exhausted from the different roles they carry out. Among these roles include acquiring knowledge from non-nursing disciples to treat patients.
If hospitals want their nurses to stay in their jobs and hire new ones, they must find a way to implement minimum nurse-to-patient ratios. Nurses are not robots; they feel exhausted too, and we cannot replace them with robots either!
As exhausting as their jobs can be, nurses will continue to give their best. Providing them with better options and opportunities will surely change their perspective. Hopefully, healthcare facilities will consider the benefits of a reduced nurse ratio. It will be helpful to their nurses and the patients, and the entire hospital as well.