Do Acuities Work At Your Hospital?

  1. Acuities have never worked as far as I can remember.....not even today where I am currently working, yet we still have to input acuities into the system every morning before 1100 hour.

    Do acuities work where you work? If they do, how?

    If they don't work, why do them?
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   Genista
    We have acuities to fill out, too. I was trying to do them for awhile (knowing full well that they don't amount to a hill of beans). But lately, things have been so crazy at work, and I just haven't been doing em at all for a few mos (neither have my coworkers). I'm sure we will be chided again, and told how important it is to do them. But it doesn't matter if your acuities are off the chart- you'll be lucky to get staff at all, let alone extra staff for higher acuities.

    And you know why we do them- to prove something to JCAHO. It's a smoke & mirrors game.
  4. by   live4today
    Originally posted by kona2
    ......................And you know why we do them- to prove something to JCAHO. It's a smoke & mirrors game.
    I hear ya kona2. If JCAHO would only make their rounds "unannounced", I wonder how many hospitals would be fined? Perhaps enough fines would be collected to throw into a budget to hire more nurses and pay the nurses already on board more pay with greater benefits.

    Does anyone have the phone number to JCAHO? :chuckle
  5. by   altomga
    We use a computerized medicus system to classify our patients. Daily classification is to be done by 1100 each day, but any new pt or change in pt status the pt is to be reclassified to "capture" the work load.!!!
    Whatever, we do it and nothing is ever done about the high acuity that we carry on a daily basis.
    Just more paperwork in my opinion, NURSES WORK HARD PERIOD!!!
  6. by   mattsmom81
    It's just another piece of required but useless paperwork... acuities are an exercise in futility. Even if we have a floor full DKA's with hourly labs, total cares, a lines, sheaths to pull, complete heart blocks...acute MI's...they are staffed one nurse to 5 patients. This is on my PCU/stepdown.

    My ICU is staffed one to 2 unless some are PCU status, then the supervisors play games with staffing. Postop hearts are generally 1:1 til stable/ extubated, but this even gets challenged nowadays. It's an adventure day to day to see what staffing we will have, and a neverending battle for sufficent/safe staffing.
  7. by   Mimi2RN
    JHACO does make surprise visits....and fuss about silly things. We are not supposed to have an empty bed in in the level II nursery. No warmer waiting for the next surprise baby. No crib for the growing premie......Why don't they worry about important things! Can you imagine having a crash c/s, and having to find and set basic equipment?
    Actually we don't have an empty warmer...we have been too busy lately!
  8. by   MelRN13
    Originally posted by cheerfuldoer
    I hear ya kona2. If JCAHO would only make their rounds "unannounced", I wonder how many hospitals would be fined? Perhaps enough fines would be collected to throw into a budget to hire more nurses and pay the nurses already on board more pay with greater benefits.

    Does anyone have the phone number to JCAHO? :chuckle
    Starting in 2004, all JCAHO surveys will be unannounced. And I think that's the way it should be. Why are we so worried about fixing things before they come? Shouldn't we fix things on a more permanent basis?
  9. by   flashpoint
    Most of the time our acuity system works. My biggest complaint is that someone who is on TPN and has a foley that just sleeps all of the time is considered more work than a confused old lady that needs the commode every 15 minutes, requires assist of two, needs fed, and wants her hair curled...sigh.
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    nope for the reasons stated above. it's another piece of paper among many we have to fill out as charge nurses. it's a joke most the time.
  11. by   Allison S.
    I work in rehab, and our acuity measure fails to capture ambulatory status and continence. These are time-consuming issues in rehab, and can make or break the staffing level.
  12. by   P_RN
    The didn't work. Found several hundred completed ones in a cardboard box under a desk in the Nursing Office. No one ever looked at them
  13. by   HARN
    Acuities are worthless b/c we are given the least amount of staffing as possible & would never be given any extra help if it were needed. I do mine every night just like I was told but I often wonder if anything would truly happen if I didn't
  14. by   Mimi2RN
    Our acuities are a part of the patients permanent record. Unfortunately, the numbers don't mean anything, or make any changes in our staffing. We are staffed by the number of warm bodies available for that shift.

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