It’s not uncommon for nurses to work a shift when patients need far more RN staffing than what is on duty. In one study, researchers discovered hospitals operated below RN staffing targets over one-third of the time.
Even more concerning, the study determined that when hospitals didn’t provide the number of RNs that were expected for that shift, patients were more likely to die.
Nurse Staffing and Inpatient Hospital Mortality
Jack Needleman, Ph.D., Peter Buerhaus, Ph.D., R.N., et al New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM); funded by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Mar. 17, 2011