whats the average nurse/patient ratio

  1. I was offered a job at a nursing care/rehab center, and I just found out that its a 40 bed unit. The nurse/patient ratio is 1:20. I think this ratio is unsafe and crazy....I was also offered another job on a cardiac unit in a hospital. The nurse/patient ratio on that unit is 1:8....
    I have no experience with cardiac nursing, just rehab. I don't know which I should take.....any suggestions?
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    About mka126RN

    Joined: Apr '03; Posts: 2


  3. by   gwenith
    What is the accuity?

    !:8 sounds LOTS better than 1:20 but if the eight patients are all unstable requiring multiple interventions while the 20 patients are all self-caring independant then you are beeter with the 1:20.

    For further information look up the term "patient nurse dependency"(PND). One of the BIG pushes here in Aussieland is to use PND computer programs to accurately assess nursing requirements per shift.
  4. by   MelRN13
    Our cardiac telemetry is 1:6, not counting support staff. We've explored this issue numerous times, try the search button in the upper right hand corner, and you may find what you're looking for!

    Good luck on your decision.
  5. by   LilgirlRN
    Look for another job. You don't HAVE to take either of these jobs.
  6. by   Going80INA55
    I would look for another job.
    Our tele was 1:8 and it was TOTALLY insafe.
  7. by   live4today
    On dayshift, our telemetry unit's nurse/patient ratio is usually 1:5...no more than 1:6. It's more than enough to care for when they are cardiac telemetry patients.

    gwenith...we call PND's Patient Acuities in American hospitals.
  8. by   gwenith
    Ta cheerfuldoer different language. I don't join in the patient nurse ratio arguement a lot since we have a DIFFERENT hospital setup here in Australia.
  9. by   Genista
    1 Rn per 8 pts sounds unsafe to me. I spent the past 3 years on a tele floor. We staffed 1:4 for days, 1:5 pms, and 1:6 nocs. Sometimes the RNs would be responsible for an additional 2-4 pts shared with an LVN. We had 1 CNA per 12 patients days & pms, often NONE on nocs. Sounds dreamy in theory, but factor in some VT, chest pain, nitro drips, cardizem drips, a couple cardioversions here & there, post heart caths, EKGS, etc. and it can get really hairy.We had a lot of overtime on that floor...an hour a day not unusual, and often no breaks.

    I would ask for a tour of the unit...find out what kinds of patients they take. Is there a teletech? Is there a lead RN? Does the lead RN take an assignment? Are you expected to "cover" LVNs? Do they staff any better for certain higher acuities (some floors will add a "kicker" where if you have a cardiac drip, you get one less patient).

    If you have never worked tele before, I would find out if they pay for your dysrhythmia/ACLS classes. How much precepting will you get?

    Why not ask if you can shadow a nurse for a few hours? You might get a better idea of the job requirements.

    Hope you find the best job for you! Keep looking, and don't settle for less. There are some decent jobs out there. Good luck!

  10. by   kewlnurse
    WOW you guys are complaining about 1:8? Our sugical tele floor on nights is 1:12 and the med tele is even higher.
  11. by   Going80INA55
    Incredible, Kewl

    Maybe those nurses should let their feet do the talking.
  12. by   kewlnurse
    Originally posted
    Incredible, Kewl

    Maybe those nurses should let their feet do the talking..
    No place to go, there is no shortage here cuz all the hospitals, every one of which is unionized, staff like that
  13. by   Jenn CLPN
    on a medsurg floor they wanted to give me 12 patients on days....way to many! Then if one doesnt get enough attention, because one crashed, they complain and then you get a write up.
    I quit that job and went to office nursing.
  14. by   CCURN
    On our tele units, it is 3/4 days, 3/4eves and 6-8 nights, In the ICUS it is 1 or 2 patients.....From what it sounds like we are pretty lucky.........I am not sure how you get your work done..........