I am curious what you all think could or should be done concerning the understaffing issue.
When I was the Director of Nursing with a Home Health and Staffing Company I used to tell my nurses,"If you arive to do a shift if you feel it is an unsafe environment for the patients please call me immediately before you take report or take the assignment". On the few occasions when I did get those calls I was always able to negotiate sending in another nurse or CNA to fix the problem. This decreased the danger the patients would have been in.
When I used to work charge in the hospital for med-surg I used to do the same thing. I would get permission to staff r/t acuity and census with adequate staff and we could use agency, and did. Those were lucky days I reckon.
Do you guys think it is reasonable to refuse to work for an employer who doesn't staff safely either due to policy, or failure to recruit and maintain a sufficeint staff?
Personally I believe it is our RESPONSIBILITY to our patients to provide them with care in a safe environment. I think we enable hospital administrators when we allow them to short staff a hospital and we accept assignments that put our patients in danger.
If we all stuck to those principles enrollment in schools would be higher and patients would be safer.
The real devil in this is insurance and medicare who somehow ended up calling all the shots. Instead of hospitals telling them what care costs and asking for payment insurance has determined what they will pay and hospitals have altered policy to remain fiscially solvent.
I wish I could go to the car showroom and say I will take that car and I agree to pay you 10K for it - but sir the car cost 22k - oh, but I am paying you 10k so you had better reduce costs be whatever means neccessary or lose money, no matter to me.
The spiral healthcare is caught up in seems downright futile at times.