Survey: Do you work short staffed on a daily? - page 2

This months survey Question... Do you work short staffed on a daily basis? FYI: Here are the results from this survey question, when asked on allnurses.com last month: Yes 81.91 % No 18.09... Read More

  1. by   Stargazer
    I quit my hospital nursing job due to short staffing. A typical ICU assignment went from 1:1 or 1:2 to 1:3, even with 2 (or even 3) vents. One nurse had a balloon pump pt (pretty much unstable by definition) and they told her she had to take another pt. IABP's used to ALWAYS be 1:1. They used to ask if I could take another pt in addition to my fresh open heart pt. "Not on my license", was my response. We filled out unsafe staffing forms and called the hospital administrator on-call at home every single shift. (One of them had the nerve to complain about being awakened at 3 AM--and caught a blistering earful from the charge nurse!)It didn't seem to make any difference.

    We used to have an in-house agency and OT incentive staffing programs which worked beautifully, but someone decided they were too expensive. Our unit manager disappeared after 5 PM every day and NEVER answered her home phone or pager. She would not give us the authority to hire agency or travelling nurses or offer incentive pay. They tried making us do mandatory OT for a while until someone clued in the state nurses association (our bargaining unit), which informed the hospital that leaving after your scheduled 12-hr shift was NOT abandonment if the hospital failed to properly staff the unit, and to knock it off.

    There were also never enough techs to assist with care. I was lucky if I had enough time to throw my meds at my pts, scribble a few VS's, and turn them--maybe twice--in a 12-hour shift. Forget baths, teaching, even changing lines in a timely fashion; and any semblance of TLC. I drove home every night feeling inadequate and depressed that my pts had received far less care than they needed or deserved, and scared for my license.

    Every time I talk to one of my former co-workers, or any of my friends currently working bedside care (and judging from many posts on this site), it's gotten worse, not better. I wouldn't even consider going back to hospital nursing as long as conditions remain this bad.
  2. by   askater
    We worked short on weekends every 2-3 weeks. But the problem was "solved", our matrix was changed. We have to take on more patients.

    Even though they changed midnights matrix, they still are short-staffed probably every other weekend. So they're working a cardiac step-down with 7 patients ne nurse. That's why I left midnight shift, it was never staffed to matrix. Plus they usually have no or only one aide.

    I must say our nurses work over whenever they can. But most nurses are getting burnt out and not working over as much.
  3. by   PLK6M2S2A@YAHOO.COM
    Today{sat.}our 29 bed unit will be staffed with 2 R.N.'s & 1LPN. It's a med-surg unit,mostly pulmonary/diabetes ie geriatrics,NH pt's .About 75% need assistance with ADL's.We may or may not have 1 nursing assistance. Management feels we are adaquately staffed.But I work there &know better.I sick to death of working like a dog just to give minimal care&frustrated by the lack of options,short of quitting. I really care about these pt.'s & I'm afraid for their safety.The other RN who works weekends with me is totally burned-out but needs the job,reluctant to stand up with me .So here I go once into the trenches,hope I don't cause harm.Wish me luck

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