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Good nursing ratios needed for safe care

DEAR EDITOR:

It’s no secret that over the past year-and-a-half, the medical profession has faced tremendous challenges and reevaluation of previous practices.

Nurses in particular have dealt with an increase in patient acuity coupled with low staffing levels, requiring care for more patients than is considered safe. These inadequate nurse-to-patient ratios result in compromised care and negative patient outcomes. Studies show that when RNs are forced to care for too many patients at one time, they are at higher risk of preventable medical errors, avoidable complications, falls and injuries, pressure sores, increased length of stay and readmissions.

In addition, all these factors contribute to higher burnout rates and job dissatisfaction, hurting the profession even more. Even worse, there are no federal mandates regulating the number of patients an RN can care for at one time in U.S. hospitals. Safe RN-to-patient ratios are cost-effective for hospitals

SAMANTHA PAIGE ROCK

Struthers

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