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Nurse Patient Ratio??????

California   (4,721 Views 11 Comments)
by nurseshrek nurseshrek (New Member) New Member

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What is the nurse- patient ratio for nursing homes here in california??? I currently have 34 patients on my shift. :angryfire

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norcalRNstudent has 1 years experience and specializes in ER.

1,697 Visitors; 97 Posts

To my knowledge, there is none- state mandated ratios apply only to hospital settings.:o

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1 Follower; 76,438 Visitors; 26,410 Posts

There are no ratios for nursing homes. They are not covered under the state-mandated ratios. The ratios are only for acute hospitals.

34 is actually at the low side of patient load in the LTC. Can go as high as 60, and sometimes more.

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Daytonite has 40 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

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the california nurse staff ratio law is section 1276.4 and 1276.5 of the california health and safety code. you should also look at section 1276.65 as well. you can read the actual law by going to this webpage http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/calawquery?codesection=hsc and then clicking on the link that contains those section numbers (division 2, chapter 2, article 3). if the webpage doesn't come up on your computer right away, check to see that you have enabled popups for this particular site. the law was signed in 1999 by governor davis and is administrated by the california department of public health services. unfortunately, it only pertains to the acute hospital setting.

as suzanne4 has said, 34 is not a bad patient load for ltc. it was the number of patients i had in my assigned area at the last ltc i worked. i've worked in ltc off and on throughout my years as a nurse and there were many times when 50 patients was more like the norm. one thing that working in ltc will do is make you very good at organizing your time.

what are you having problems with, if i might ask? is is always better to try working within your organization to solve problems first rather than to go outside and try to force the strict adherence to laws. the minute public officials are brought into a situation you never know what defecation is going to hit the ventilation and what is going to get examined, found and swept out along with the other trash. have you tried posting or reading things on the geriatric and ltc forum of allnurses? i'm betting that any problems you are experiencing are not unique. you will find a lot of opinions and support from other ltc nurses there.

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1,180 Visitors; 24 Posts

Man are you lucky....I got hire at a LTC as a new grad with pay of $24 and patient ratio of 45-50:1....

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4,971 Visitors; 492 Posts

Suzanne, can I take your avatar to dinner? :D

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3,570 Visitors; 279 Posts

I think everyone may be misunderstanding the original post, which stated: "What is the nurse-patient ratio..." The post did NOT say: what is the law. A ratio is a mathematical comarison of one part to another part. For instance, the original post said that there were 34 patients on the shift, or a 34:1 ratio. The person wants to know what the RATIO of patients to healthcare workers is, on average, for places where you work in CA. Nurseshrek didn't mention anything about any laws.

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Daytonite has 40 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

2 Followers; 4 Articles; 100,717 Visitors; 14,602 Posts

the person wants to know what the ratio of patients to healthcare workers is, on average, for places where you work in ca. nurseshrek didn't mention anything about any laws.

here in california when someone asks about "the nurse-patient ratio" they are referring to the california nurse staff ratio law. if you you check out the link to the law that i gave you will see that it clearly says, "by january 1, 2002, the state department of health services shall adopt regulations that establish minimum, specific, and numerical licensed nurse-to-patient ratios by licensed nurse classification and by hospital unit for all health facilities" and "these ratios shall constitute the minimum number of registered and licensed nurses that shall be allocated." most licensed nurses here in california have heard of this law. however, not everyone is aware of the specifics of the law, particularly if their area of practice isn't affected by it.

i did not misunderstand the op. if you don't live in california i can understand why you would not know about the impact this law has had out here. however, i'm concerned about a student nurse who can take a simple question of "what is the nurse- patient ratio for nursing homes here in california??? i currently have 34 patients on my shift." and elaborate on it to come up with "the person wants to know what the ratio of patients to healthcare workers is, on average, for places where you work in ca." that's a real mind blower.

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531 Visitors; 1 Post

Hi There,Know how you feel and think the nursing home is the dumping ground for acute,sub-acute and pysch,also of course a few regular senior citizens......Should be against the law as the patients cannot and do not get adequate care......rose007

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1,378 Visitors; 44 Posts

Hi There,Know how you feel and think the nursing home is the dumping ground for acute,sub-acute and pysch,also of course a few regular senior citizens......Should be against the law as the patients cannot and do not get adequate care......rose007

This is exactly my point.....quality of care....elderly patients are very fragile and needs quality in the care that we give....That is just my concern daytonite...not my problem

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1 Follower; 76,438 Visitors; 26,410 Posts

Nursing homes are not covered under the ratio laws, and many owners of these facilities could care less about the people under their care. They provide minimum staff to care for the population there. Wish that some of them would have to be a patient there and see what others are aware of that they are not. Or have their loved one placed there, and without any special treatment from the staff.

Perhaps things will change then, and only then.

If things are that bad, report them to the state and have them investigated. That is the only way to get things fixed like this.

But also let this be a wake-up call for others from foreign countries that nursing homes in most cases are not the way to go, it is not a quick fix to getting to the US.

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