Specialties Geriatric


I work in a 120 bed facility.. I have 60 patients by myself theres another nurse with her 60.

12am the med pass is light but I give close to 40 residents (including 7 gtubes) all their meds at 6am taking me 2+hrs..

I do glucochecks (and get bs in the AM about 10 of them), Check fridge temps, date everything, stock carts, do LABS, do tx, chart on no less than 12 a night + monthly summaries, we do monthly changeover BY OURSELVES WITH NO EXTRA HELP. I do the nightly census, put out all the new 02 tubing (clean them also) syringes, neb masks etc. paperwork for dr appts in the AM, plus 2 body audits a night.

Is this normal?!legal?! doesnt feel comfortable.

Specializes in OB, NICU, Nursing Education (academic).

I'm trying to wrap my mind around a 40 patient med pass in ONLY 2 hours (that's 3 minutes per patient)!!

No. This is not normal. Legal? I don't see how it could be (but I don't know what state you are in or what the law says). What kind of administration would think that this is a reasonable expectation?

Specializes in CT ICU, OR, Orthopedic.

Wowsers! That's insane! That's an accident waiting to happen.


190 Posts

Just curious as well...are you an RN? LPN?(either way...that is way too many patients IMO). Check with your state board of nursing and see what they have to say. Agree that's an accident waiting to happen.


38,333 Posts

That was normal for me. Also could have 80 residents and was the only licensed nurse at night for 52 residents. One can be very busy at night in a LTC facility.

nkochrn, RN

1 Article; 257 Posts

Specializes in Rural Health.

I work PRN in a LTC with approx. 40 patients. There is usually 1 LPN and 1 CNA there, so the nurse has to help with bed checks, although lately they've been trying to staff 2 CNA's. The med pass there is really light on night shift, I think there's a total of like 3 pills you have to give, but the 7am med pass the day shift does is very stressful.

I think it's assumed way too often that the night shift has all kinds of extra time b/c people seem to think residents actually sleep all night! haha. So I think that the extra paperwork gets piled on night shift and no one realizes how much it all adds up to.

Specializes in Cardiac/Step-Down, MedSurg, LTC.

Last week was hell for me on nights. Too much going on to do anything extra whatsoever. Usually I have some time to get caught up on filing or doing some assessments the first half of the month, but it was just.... awfully busy last week. A lot of people don't realize that when you're the only nurse for 32 people... stuff takes a bit longer to do. Day shift thinks that we should be on top of SO much, but there are two nurses on days and evenings (usually) so the load it sort of cut in half! And Marissasmommy is right.... they don't sleep! That's why they nap after meals during the day :)

Specializes in Rehab, Infection, LTC.

sorry but yes, it's legal. that doesnt make it right though. but for us that have chosen LTC...thats our lot in life so to speak.

night shift gets dumped all the grunt work of changing tubings,charting,etc. it was that way in our facility. but some of the nurses got together and talked to the DON asking her to take some of their charting responsibilities away and put on other shifts. we now do a lot of stuff on the weekends during the day.

i worked in one facility where the entire night shift quit except for the supervisor. i changed hours for a while to help them out and worked 12 hr days to cover night shift. it was either me or the supervisor working, no other nurse for about 6 months. i had 180 patients. luckily they were all ICF but i still had 180 pts. i had to start morning meds at 4am to get the whole building done. once i had 2 patients code at the same time (called 911 begging for help on that one ). the only way i could get it done was my CNAs. we worked as a team. there were 4 units and since i couldnt be on every one at the same time, they would help me.

then i took a job in a LTC that had 3 floors, 60 each. 1st floor all SNF, 2nd floor 1/2 SNF, 3rd all ICF. if i had a nurse call in then i had to work both the 2nd floor AND the 3rd floor. i did this 3-4 days a week. my husband is an engineer. he did a time study on me and helped me come up with a routine that made it doable or i couldnt have done it.

i'm not saying i did more than you do. i was just giving you some examples of other situations that sucked royally but were also legal.

we need safe ratios to give patient care!!!


1 Article; 1,796 Posts

Specializes in Gerontology, nursing education.
we need safe ratios to give patient care!!!


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