It seems to me from the responses, the nurse to patient ratio is dependent on the location, availability, acuity, risks, experience, finances, management, and the circumstances (which is really in a a nutshell, those that I just mentioned).
Let us ask ourselves, do you honestly feel that staffing practices put patient safety as the number 1 priority? Do we leave work each day feeling good about ourselves and our employer? And what about California with their mandated 1 nurse to 5 patient ratio, practical or paranoia? At my institution, there is really a nursing shortage...for experienced nurses. New grads are in a tight job market right now. Nursing school
teaches us the "ideal" but not the real world. Every nurse know this. Then why is this the approach? I know I am throwing quite a few questions out there. Just like everything in life....finances dictate practices.