Nurse to pt ratio per state


How can I find this out online? I have been searching all morning and all I can come up with is how many hours are needed per pt in a 24 hr period. I know there has to be some sort of regulation so that facilities don't take advantage of it. I'm a LPN in FL and we need 0.6 nurs hours per pt per 24 hrs. If they have 10 nurses on the day and evening shift and only 3 at night with 1 lpn taking 60 pt's how is that allowed? Anyone have any links or insight? Thanks


520 Posts

Specializes in Med Surg, LTC, Home Health. Has 31 years experience.

Unfortunately, only ICU's have mandated nurse/pt ratios (1-2) at this time, except for California who have a 1:5 ratio on med surg floors. LTC facilites are only expected to maintain "safe ratios" that they determine themselves. That is ridiculous since of course they will give you 60 pts and say its safe in order to line their pockets with cash. The problem is that even the states are in on the conspiracy. The law in my state says all meds must be given an hour before up to an hour after the prescribed time. So when the state regulators show up and follow you on your med pass, they can easily see that you will not finish within those boundaries. They watch you for 3-4 patients and then leave while having so many rules to follow that they know full well that if you followed them all, it would take 5 hours to pass the meds (watching you for those 3-4 patients takes at least 30 dont have to be a mathematician to see that you wont finish in 2 hours). I always preset all my meds before the time to give them. It was against the rules yet was the only way to get them out in a timely manner. It comes down to which rules do you break in long term care, so i break the ones that will benefit the patients. I used to tell my facility, "send your best nurse over here and have him/her show me how to do this med pass in 2 hours". They dont care and neither do the regulators. That is why i dont do LTC anymore. Apparently, we need a stronger lobby in congress. :twocents:

OC_An Khe

1,018 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care,Recovery, ED. Has 40 years experience.

Except for California, as far as I know, the nurse to patient ratios are not kept in any public data base. There are some states trying to make this information reportable to the state, and thus public knowledge but I am not aware of any that have succeeded at this time.

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