unsafe staffing levels?

  1. 0
    First of all I'm a UNE who is about to graduate pretty soon. I currently work on a busy unit and I've been noticing recently that my supervising RN has been taking on a huge patient ratio and although I can help out I'm limited in what I can do. I'm also worried that if something does happen to a patient i'll be held liable as well. I've reported the incidences many times but it's like patient safety is really not priority on the unit as crazy as it sounds.

    Wondering what else I can do? If nothing should I just quit before I ruin my career?

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  2. 3 Comments...

  3. 3
    First of all, you can't be held liable because you are a student. The nurse you're working with would be held liable.

    Unfortunately, many units have unsafe staffing ratios as a result of funding cuts, but the nurses do the best they can. What in particular is making you feel unsafe?

    I wonder if some of your apprehension is related to being new and inexperienced...which is completely natural.
    Fiona59, Daisy_08, and loriangel14 like this.
  4. 1
    Unfortunately nursing staffing levels are a concern worldwide, here in the UK on my previous unit there wasn't a day when someone didn't report unsafe staffing levels, they tried to placate us with agency nurses which made the situation worse in my opinion worse as they couldn't preform all the duties needed by the type of unit I worked on, and didn't have the same amount of ownership to the Unit that the full time staff did so didnt seem to care that we were failing on aspects of care.

    Governments and managers, didn't seem to realize how it was on the front line, they only see results and when we always produce those results they believe that the system working. What they fail to see is all the extra hours we have to put in, the absence of breaks and how we drive our selves to exhaustion because its about the patient, If we fail it could ultimately mean death or worsening injury to the patient, which with 95% of nurses in unacceptable.

    In regards to your questions "Wondering what else I can do? If nothing should I just quit before I ruin my career?"

    I have felt the same way as you do many times, but if you work to the 5 P's, prior preparation prevents poor performance, you will give yourself a chance, plan you workload, use triage and work as a team. It is by no means easy being a nurse, but if you have the passion and the drive to make a difference you just keep going. Sometimes you may have to tell yourself to keep going and at times you may go home and think I ain't going back and I'd be extremely surprised if upwards of 50% percent of nurses on this site have not felt that at one point in there career.

    Don't give up !! The reason you will go back is because you are a nurse and you are the airway of health, without you a child somewhere has got a less of a chance at life , an old lady has no-one to hold her hand in the last moments of her life.
    joanna73 likes this.
  5. 1
    Quote from helterskelter22
    First of all I'm a UNE who is about to graduate pretty soon. I currently work on a busy unit and I've been noticing recently that my supervising RN has been taking on a huge patient ratio and although I can help out I'm limited in what I can do. I'm also worried that if something does happen to a patient i'll be held liable as well. I've reported the incidences many times but it's like patient safety is really not priority on the unit as crazy as it sounds.

    Wondering what else I can do? If nothing should I just quit before I ruin my career?
    You can't be held liable as a student. How large of an assignment is she taking on?
    joanna73 likes this.


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