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Comparative Analysis of Nurse-patient Ratio Mandates for the Hospital Setting - Research Paper Example

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A Comparative Analysis of Nurse-Patient Ratio Mandates For the Hospital Setting ABSTRACT Throughout the United States there is an initiative to create mandatory guidelines regulating the exact number of nurses that must be present at all times during any hours where patients are present and under the care of medical professionals…
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Comparative Analysis of Nurse-patient Ratio Mandates for the Hospital Setting
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Download file to see previous pages Legislation has passed in California, and will be presented in other states to mandate a specific ratio of nurses per patient that must be maintained at all times. The goal of this study is to identify a balance between adequate levels of nurse-personnel while maintaining hospital efficiency both in terms of cost, and the time-resources of medical professionals. A Comparative Analysis of Nurse-Patient Ratio Mandates For the Hospital Setting INTRODUCTION The possibility of nursing shortages is a relevant concern for hospitalists, patients, and the general public alike. Years past have produced numerous concerns of under-staffed, overburdened hospitals as a barrier to adequate care. This paper will endeavor to examine the conventional wisdom that more patient responsibility will yield lower quality care from nurses and other healthcare professionals; and the extent to which such a decline in patient outcome can be quantified. But is is true that patients will receive better care, with fewer medical errors under a system of precise nurse-patient ratios? Are nurses doing a better job under such a system? How would such a change extend to doctors and other medical practitioners? Over a dozen states are now considering some form of mandate that will enforce specific ratios of nurses for every patient under the hospital's care, it is worthwhile to examine critically the available research on the balance between caregiver and patient. It is in the interest of everyone to seek the ideal balance between nurse staffing levels and the cost-effective management of the time-resources of medical professionals. CASE STUDY “ Celeste examined the patient's chart; she had to remind herself that Mr. McGillicuddy wasn't just a disease; he was a case of full-blown nephrotic syndrome; based on the protein-cysts found in his urinalysis, plus a chronic case of trigeminal neuralgia on top of that. Oh, and a living. breathing person. But with his age and prognosis, personhood wouldn't cut much slack with the transplant committees. The experienced Nurse was not optimistic that he would retain his living status much longer; in part because the very lab results that Celeste found so damning took as long as they did to arrive; compounding the bad news they were reporting. On the one hand, in preparation for the new regulations mandating more nurses for every medical center in the county, patients would get more attention from nurses like her; the problem being – a hospital as small as hers had to cut corners somewhere; so they'd hadn't been able to hire that new med-tech they'd been needing for months now. So the doctors were probably lucky to get their results as soon as they did – as late as it seemed to her. But adding more nurses was about to be required by law; not something she could whine about to the head-nurse. She patted Mr. McGillicuddy's hand in reassurance. Well, it would fall to her – and the new blood they were hiring to pick up the slack; make up for the corners cut...” PROS More nurses equals better care; in order to ensure the best possible patient outcomes during hospitalization, nurse-to-patient ratios must be mandated by law. The correct ratio will lead to happier nurses, and healthier patients. It seems an obvious solution; more nurses certainly can't hurt, More eyes to watch over ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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