Nurse to patient ratio

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This topic contains 43 replies, has 38 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of deafrninsc deafrninsc 3 years, 11 months ago.

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    Profile photo of Tammy B. RN
    Tammy B. RN

    I work on a very busy unit at my hospital. My unit has med-surg, oncology and neurology. The typical nurse to patient ratio is anywhere from 1:6 to 1:10.

    What is it like in your neck of the woods?


    1:10? Ouch. We are spoiled at my hospital. Med/Surg has a 1:5 ratio. The ICU is 1:2. The worst ratio I ever had was down in Salem OR where on the TELE floor, it was 1:5, but these were sick patients, sicker than my current hospital’s ICU patients, and it was total care, no CNA help. Glad I didn’t kill anyone back then as a fairly new nurse. I currently work in a small, rural hospital, which I find nice, but the bigger hospital in the city used to have 1:12 ratios on some floors, but I’m not sure if they still do that many or not. I’m glad there are energetic nurses like you out there, but I think this old man will stay in the rural areas.


    Such a shame to hear about those super high ratios. I was on a step down unit and we were 1:6 which was a little high, five would have been nice. I’m with my grandma in another hospital in their ICU and their ratio is 1:2-3, ICU was like that at my old job too. The med-surg at my old job went all the way up to 7-8! Nuts! The government should regulate the ratios!


    Oh I had a preceptor from England and their ratio was 1:17!!!!

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