Nurses 6:1 Patient Care Techs 25:1 in an Acute Care Setting. Is this fair??

  1. 1
    I've been a long time lurker and I love you all. And if this is in the wrong forum please forgive me...

    But I've been working at my current job as a Patient Care tech for 2 years while in nursing school. My floor is an acute care/overflow stepdown unit that primarly focuses on Pulmonary/Stroke/Seizure Medicine. The staffing on my floor has suddenly changed to become more budget friendly so they cut back the staff. Nurses will be 6 and 7 to one and PCT's are most of the time 20-26 to one. The PCTS do vital signs, fingersticks, admissions, and cleaning. Nurses are swamped and the PCTs are worked to the bone. This is a heavy floor with 95% of our patients being high fall risks.

    I feel this is unfair to both nurses and the nurses aides. I was just wondering if any of you lovely nurses experience this poor staffing as well and tips for me and my nurses to help us not wanna rip our hair out at the end of stift!
    Joe V likes this.

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  2. 27 Comments...

  3. 2
    All you can do is prioritize. The only thing I've seen improve horrible ratios is nurses quitting in masses. Management never cares until it costs them more (agency, managers having to cover the floor, sentinel events, etc.) instead of less.
    KelRN215 and wooh like this.
  4. 3
    Is this an HCA facility, seems to be their norm except nurses are taking 8 and only having one tech for 36 pts.. What can be done... Leave...Sad state this is coming to; the future scares me.
    tokmom, wooh, and Esme12 like this.
  5. 0
    I think the floor staffing ratios are similar. Around 5 to 7 for each nurse and usually 1 to 2 unit clerks/patient care techs for about 20 patients.
  6. 0
    well we only qualify for two techs after 26 patients. and this is a community owned hospital, a major healthcare system for the state, and the largest hospital in the city. (second largest city in the state)
  7. 6
    "Fair" has nothing to do with it.
    elprup, KelRN215, tokmom, and 3 others like this.
  8. 3
    This is why ADLs get so overlooked in the hospitals. The techs or PCTs or whatever are so busy checking vitals on 30 pts that bedside care falls to the wayside.
    tokmom, Sisyphus, and Dazglue like this.
  9. 8
    Quote from BrandonLPN
    This is why ADLs get so overlooked in the hospitals. The techs or PCTs or whatever are so busy checking vitals on 30 pts that bedside care falls to the wayside.
    Exactly. Want to know why patients are getting bedsores, aren't getting fed, not ambulating like they should? It's not humanly possible for a nurse to have 6 patients and the aide have 25 and expect things to get done. It's sad. All the money saved by not hiring staff will get eaten up by costs imposed due to preventable conditions.
    RW23RN, C-lion, Sisyphus, and 5 others like this.
  10. 5
    Wow....this is not good....all the work done in the past to improve the quality of care...lower nurse patient end up like this....and I'm afraid Obama-care will only add to the problem....there was a time I never thought I would say this but nurses need to organize and unionize to save our own backsides and save our patients.
  11. 1
    What I don't understand is how hospitals think this will save them money in the end. They way they are going to be reimbursed will be negatively affected by this poor care: readmissions, patient satisfaction, and hospital acquired infections.. There is no common sense left at the admin level.
    kbrn2002 likes this.

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