I am a new-grad and just started a position at a SNF in the Bay Area. I was wondering what the nurse to patient ratio, according to state guidelines, is in California. I have been working in this facility for about 2-3 weeks or so and I have to say that I am starting to regret it. I was oriented for only 2 days on the unit and they put me by myself for a PM shift. I figured I would have more time for orientation, right? Our current census is 68 patients and there are only 2 charge nurses for 3 stations. That's a 1:34 ratio!!!!
I have concerns about being overwhelmed with 34 patients with only 2 days of orientation. I still do not know how to do anything in the nurses station and all my meds are being given 2 hours late. I am worried that I may make a mistake that may jeopardize my license or even worse jeopardize a residents life!!! I'm not confident the management would have my back if something goes wrong, meaning I am placing my RN license, that I worked so hard for, at risk as I working here. I continue to ask for more days of orientation to my DON, but she insist I will do fine and start to get the hang of it soon.
I feel more on time after I have cared for about 20-25 residents. But then I think about the other 15 I have to attend to and it just get pushes back all my responsibilities. I have spoken to some of the nurses that have worked there for a long time and they said they used to have 3 nurses for each station (1:22 ratio). But not anymore
since the facility underwent new management.
I guess I'm looking for advice on what to do as well. I go to work scared, full of anxiety and uncertain. Now, as a new grad, I don't think that is a healthy way to begin a career. I don't want to loose my license. I originally wanted to work in a hospital, but none were taking new grads. I would be devastated if I lose my RN license over a job I didn't want in the first place. If this is the way SNF's operate, then I may have to consider looking for another one or just not consider SNF's at all.
Thanks for reading. Any advice or insight will help a lot.
Jun 30, '09
In Massachusetts the proposed ratio in a HOSPITAL is something like 7 or 8 to 1.
They are proposing a 1:5 ratio on a rehab unit and skilled nursing???????????? Who is going to pay for this? Certainly NOT Medicare OR any of the managed care companies. Do these people really have a clue?
Last edit by CapeCodMermaid on Jun 30, '09
: Reason: had more to say