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Patient Ratios

In: Other Topics

Submitted By chelegirl27
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One of the current issues in nursing today is whether or not there should be mandatory nurse-patient ratios. The article titled, “Mandatory Nurse-Patient Ratios” discusses the controversy about whether there should be mandatory ratios and how they can affect nurses and patient outcomes. Currently the state of California is the only state in the United States with mandatory nurse-patient ratios while 17 others have introduced legislation. Since California has passed legislation in 2005 there has not been any experimental evidence reported to support these ratios with more desirable patient outcomes. One of the positive outcomes for nurses is that it has made more jobs available but unfortunately has increased their workload because employers are reducing the number of ancillary staff which can lead to increased stress and burnout. The mandatory nurse-patient ratios claim to address the imbalance between patient needs and nursing resources but do not address the different levels of complex treatment required among patients. Nurses must understand their importance and advocate effectively for themselves and their patients. Providing quality research, lobbying, collaborating among members of the healthcare team and becoming more powerful with the help of special interest groups will help to make employers responsible for their legal obligations. This issue will affect me professionally because I am about to graduate from nursing school and will be actively looking for a position as a registered nurse. I am nervous about starting a new job but knowing that I may have to face an increased workload and being assigned numerous patients only adds to the nervousness. An article from the Charleston Gazette titled, “Nursing Shortage Solution: West Virginia Nursing Network”, discusses a nurses attempt to help improve the current nursing shortage and improve ratios. She...

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