Nurse to patient ratio

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

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  • #6386 Reply
    Avatar 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?

    #6389 Reply
    Avatar of Jason Hautala RN
    Jason Hautala RN

    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.

    #6395 Reply

    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!

    #6396 Reply

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

    #6397 Reply
    Avatar of Kreynolds40

    I work at a critical access hospital and generally our max is 1:6 with 2 aids. Sometimes it seems like too much!u

    #6398 Reply
    Avatar of Nurse C
    Nurse C

    I work in pediatric med-surg and we have a max of 1:5, usually it’s 1:4. I can’t imagine having something higher than that!

    #6402 Reply
    Avatar of Traci J Hart
    Traci J Hart

    I know some states are looking at regulating this at the BON level. Anything over 6 on a med/surg floor WITH aides is dangerous.

    #6407 Reply

    I have been working as a medical floor nurse for 10 years. When I first started our ratio was 1:4-5 with two CNAs for 20 patients on a night shift. Now we are taking 1:6 and only 1 CNA or at times none. I feel like ratios really should be regulated by the government or we need a union for nurses because I’ve heard rumors that my floor will soon be 1:7. That is just ridiculous and dangerous. I miss the days when I actually had time for ALL my patients. There are times when I’m juggling an admit, chemotherapy and blood transfusion all at once. I am also the charge nurse and am expected to take care of 6 patients. I really feel for the new grads and I can’t imagine trying to do this when I was brand new.

    #6411 Reply
    Avatar of Melody

    Our hospital used to have 1:4 maybe five but we had a lot of nurses being on low census a lot because they staffed for 42 patients and generally only had 30. Of course we have now made adjustments and have implemented a resource team and downsized the actually nurses scheduled and we got slammed of course.

    #6413 Reply
    Avatar of Chad

    1:4 with max of 1:5 on an adolescent Psychiatric unit with one CNA on the floor between 20+ patients.. Although sometimes the patients have multiple personalities so does that count?

    This is in Portland, OR

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