The ratio should be the same. Contrary to popular belief, night shift staff do not just sit around and do nothing all night and have patients who sleep all night. Oftentimes there are a lot of patients who DO NOT sleep during the night. You have the sundowning/confused patients. You're short on resources on nights, too...there is only one MD in house. We have no pharmacy after hours; we have to rely on our nursing supervisor to get us medications that we do not have on the unit. Bad things typically happen at night time, too - the codes, the patients who fall, patients who stroke out, etc. We have to transport our own patients to tests after hours which takes up time. Sometimes radiology can bring the patient back but not always. We seem to get a lot of admissions on night shift, too and yes, we do discharge patients at night! Discharges usually happen before 2100-2200, though. We still deal with family members - oftentimes we have at least one family member staying with a patient.
In short, night shift can be BUSY, just a different kind of a busy. I do not think the ratios should increase for the night shift staff, though. And for the record, I work on a progressive care unit. We used to have a ratio of 1:4 but because of staffing, it's now 1:5 and occasionally 1:6, which is absurd for this level of care imo.