SICU Staffing - page 2

I'm interested in finding out about staffing ratios in SICU's around the country. The unit I work in is 32 bed SICU and more often then not we must take 3 patients due to cut backs in staff. Our patient mix is general surgery,... Read More

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    in California.. title 22 makes it only 2 patients to 1 nurse max. There are times the patient is 1:1. ( I miss California!)
    I work in upstate NY now (temporarily, soon to return to California!!), and I work In the major trauma hospital for western NY and in the SICU. The staffing has always been 2:1, or a fresh liver transplant is 1:1. (or a real sickie is 1:1).
    I think the title 22 law should be made for every state for patient safety, (and nurse sanity), and the ratios lessend for the floor nurse. I will never do floor nursing again with the unsafe ratios. If they try to start to increase the patient load in ICU.. that is the day I quit nursing!

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    Where I work the load is also 1RN per 2 patients, unless it is a fresh CABG or very unstable then it is one on one. I was thinking that all ICU's were alike, with staffing I mean, I am glad I read this thread. I think I will stay right where I am.
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    WOW, ... Jenny P. I want to come work with you!!! And Julie F, sure does sound BAD, I'm afraid that would have been one contract I would have broken!!!! I guess I really con't say much though. The unit I work in is almost as bad. But it is a little easier for me, I've been there almost 3 years. We seem to take 3 patients on a regualr basis. Never enough staff. It's nothing for us to accept fresh CAB's along with two other patients or another fresh CAB!!!! Very dangerous I know. That's why I am considering leaving. I love my job and the group of docs I work with but it is getting very unsafe. Now they are starting to admit whatever comes through the door to our (heart/vascular)unit. I don't mind taking other kinds of patients but I don't think it is appropriate with a fresh heart. (our rooms are separated by curtains, set-up like PACU) The bad thing is, we work so hard to get people out (to make beds for the hearts that day) and they will fill the bed with a code or admit from ER then we have to run to get the patient moved before the heart comes. Between 2 beds monday I had 5 patients!!!!! 2 were hearts from the day before (moved out) a fresh CAB, code from the telemetry floor, (lateraled over to ICU once stable) and finally a good old GIB that died later that night!!!!

    Sorry, I know this is long just blowing off some steam!!!!

    As far as a 1:1, that's something I've NEVER seen at this hospital. However, we do have a bivad but have never used it. The day they get brave and use it, it will be a 2:1 ratio (doctor,nurseatient!!!!) We have never used it so I'm not sure anyone there would know how to take care of it!!!

    Also forgot to add, we don't have a tech, and only one secretary we share between 4 units (what has turned into basically one big unit.) We spend ALOT of time taking off orders and putting labs in the computer. (even with 3 patients and fresh hearts!!!) THis is on day. At night, they NEVER have a secretary.
    Last edit by CC NRSE on Aug 8, '01

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