question for Rn's

  1. Hi everyone! I am a nursing student here in Michigan. I hope to be working as an Rn fall of 2008. I was wondering how many patients I can expect to be responsible for at one time?
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    About vollmermc

    Joined: Nov '05; Posts: 11


  3. by   JentheRN05
    really depends on what kind of unit your on, days or nights. I work on a fairly busy ortho/neuro unit, on nights.
    I have between 5-6 patients every night, can be more or less, but that's the average for my floor
  4. by   Daytonite
    Interesting question! It depends on the area of work. In a nursing home I've had up to 50 patients I was responsible for, but I was the charge nurse and had CNAs and an LPN helping out. I worked on a stepdown unit of an acute hospital and was responsible for 10 patients and had an LPN helping me. At another stepdown I worked I had 4 patients all to myself. When I worked on one med/surge unit I had 16 patients I was responsible for with two CNAs helping.

    Understand that as an RN you are a manager of patient care. So, you will generally have a group of patients of which you are a team leader for the group of healthcare workers caring for them, thus, a supervisor of the healthcare team as well. In a primary care system where RNs are doing all the care required of the patients, they will have a load of anywhere from 6 to 10 patients to do everything for. A lot depends on how the facility has set up it's staff and decided how the nursing care is going to be delivered and by who. There is a lot of variety as to how this is done so you will get many different answers to your question.
  5. by   GooeyRN
    In med/surg I've had between 5 and 15 depending on staffing. In psych, I've had between 4 and 21 depending on staffing. It all depends on the unit, and how many nurses are available to work that day, and how many nurses administration is willing to pay for that day.
  6. by   meownsmile
    I agree, it really depends on the day, number of staff available and how your units administration is willing to let staffing fall. I have had days i start out with 4-5 and end up with 13, other days i start with 10 and end up with 4 after discharges. Every day is different.