1. Hi. I'm new here and I find this site very useful for nurses. I'm presently working in a Burn Center located in the Central California. I work night shifts and we don't have our own unit yet. Meaning, we are occupying 3 rooms from the MICU. Our unit is a 3-bed capacity but we can admit more in the med- Surg floor if needed and we have to check them Q shift and change their dressings as ordered. I work as the Shift Leader of the unit and I go down in the E.R and evaluate burns. I understand that the ratio is 1:2 for ICU level and 1:4 for Med Surg level but my question is does a shift leader takes a patient assignment.? know they are easy patients at night time because there are no change of dressings but the problem is when I have to rounds other patients in the floor and when I go to the E. R. I normally have 1 patient and usually their easy that's why my supervisors and the director want me to handle another patient from the MICU because of the low census in the BICU. My other concern is I'm not a heart nurse and I'm not comfortable taking care of their patient. Another is, I'm sometimes off from the unit and what if I get a major burn? One time, I had to admit 70% 3rd degree burn by myself alone. That was hard because patient was hypothermic. I had to be fast putting the dressings on. ICU nurses came finally to help me..but what if they're coding and busy?

    I really love burn nursing because i've been doing it for a long time but sometimes I wanted to quit. Can somebody give me the proper staffing for the Burn Center? I need something that is a fact not just an opinion like for example what does the State or Federal require? I've been surfing the internet about this and I couldn't find the answer for this. I hope that somebody could help me with this because if I need to voice out, I want rational reasons and facts.

    Thank you and More power to all of you!

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    About allanismarcus

    Joined: Nov '09; Posts: 4; Likes: 1


  3. by   swoods72
    Just explain your concerns - if they aren't willing to help you look some where else!
  4. by   CaliBurnRN
    I am an alternate Lead RN on an 8 bed burn unit. Our ratio's are usually 1:2 with the lead RN also taking an assignment of 2 pts. We still attend bed huddle, answer burn calls from other hospitals and assess pts in the ER! Many times our unit is short staffed and we are then having to do wound care for our float nurses. We also take ICU overflow pts. It can be CRAZY at times and then nice a quiet other times.
    According to my primary Lead (Burn RN 20+ years), most burn centers have the Lead out of staffing to address all the other unit issues while working on community outreach / prevention programs, prepping for ABA accreditation and such.
    Hope this helps.
  5. by   allanismarcus
    Finally, we are getting better with staffing from the experiences we had in the past. Lead RN don't take patient assignments anymore (except in certain circumstances) and we already have our own unit! Yay!

    Thanks for the response! I would love to share what your ratio's are with the jealous nurses here. I knew that there is always a good reason why policies are made and it is always for the good of the patients!
    Last edit by allanismarcus on Mar 17, '12