Shortage of nurses can affect ER’s performance too and that’s what nurses typically answer when you ask them about the importance of staffing levels.

A study published in the Western Journal of Emergency Medicine supports their claim, supplying further evidence for nurse leaders to make the case for nursing's role in accomplishing healthcare outcomes and metrics.

"Our study provides additional data that may help providers further engage hospital administration to supply adequate nurse staffing that allows EDs to better achieve performance goals and improve the patient experience," the researchers write. "This analysis is a pivotal step in identifying and ensuring appropriate nurse staffing to optimize ED quality metrics."

In a reflective empirical analysis of the electronic medical record database from a high-volume, urban public hospital, researchers compared nursing hours per day with door-to-discharge length of stay, door-to-admission LOS, and the percentage rate of patients who left without being seen.

From January to December 2015, more than 100,000 patients were seen in the ED at an average of 290 visits each day. During this time, the ED had an average of 465 nursing hours worked per day.


Researchers found that:

  • Aside from daily patient volume, occupancy, and ED admission rates, days in the lowest quartile of nursing hours experienced a 28-minute increase per patient door-to-discharge LOS when compared with the highest quartile of nursing hours.


  • There was an increase of 9 patients per day that left without being seen by a provider from the lowest to highest quartile of nursing hours.


  • Door-to-admit LOS showed no significant change across quartiles.


Authors concluded that:


  • Lower staffing rates contribute to a statistically substantial increase in wait time for patients, which then affects how many patients receive treatment each day.


Furthermore, the decrease in patients seen can also influence throughput metrics and reduce the overall revenue of facilities.


Erudite Nursing Institute™ believes that number of nursing staff matters because, nurses are the ones who attend the needs and safety of the patients and assist doctors and surgeons in administering medications and valuable instructions. Without them, successful patient recovery cannot be attained.






Note: The foregoing article is copyrighted and may not be reproduced in part or entirety without advance written permission. For permissions or editorial corrections, contact: Ms. Kelsey Hanna, khanna@EruditeNursing.education



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