How many patients are you assigned? - page 3

I am a graduate practical nurse and our hospital here routinely assigns 5 patients per nurse. The do not have CNA's. I worked the ortho floor during my last practicum weekend and it was pure... Read More

  1. by   nursekatie22
    When I was first introduced to my ortho unit (I'm still not done with orientation!), I asked what the nurse/patient ratio was (I was dumb enough to not know to ask that in the INTERVIEW!) and she said usually 5, no more than 6. I thought, hmmmm, not too bad. Well, the first 7 shifts I worked, people called in and each nurse had 7 patients. They were able to get one nurse for about 5 hours in the middle of the day a couple times, but it ended up being more of a pain than a help because report had to be given twice-not counting beginning and end of shift report-and things got missed (e.g. ancef not being hung when it was suppoesed to be and the nurse going off didn't tell the nurse taking over again......).

    It wasn't as hectic as I thought it would be, though, even though I said all that. Everyone seemed to help eachother the best they could with their own loads. The CNAs are great! They have 11-12 patients and are on top of their game most of the time.
  2. by   Meatball RN
    I work on an ortho spine/neuro/neurosurgery floor. I do rotating 12 hour shifts. We take 5-6 during the day and 7-10 at night. It's a 30 bed unit only RN's. We try and staff 6 nurses from 7a-11p and 4 nurses from 11p-7a. We have 3 CTA's from 7a-3p, and 2 from 3-11...we run with either 1 or 2 from 11-7a. We deal with a few different services and I work for a large teaching hospital so we deal soley with residents. Not that attending aren't around but they don't usually talk to us much. One nice thing is that we NEVER go over 6 patients on day shift and we never go over 10 on nights. I have to agree with previous posts that I've read about nurses on heavy floors helping each other. We really do work as a team and I've never had a problem finding another nurse to help with an assist, clean up etc. We all help out with beeping IV pumps, transfers, turns etc. Don't get me wrong it's hectic but the day flies. Also I've found that because most of us work 12's and rotate (there are a few exceptions) there isn't a lot of strife between day shift and night shift. We all know what it's like on any shift. We don't have set surgery days. Our Doc's are in the OR M-
    F with scheduled surgeries and then we do have some emergent surgeries in the evenings and on weekends. We always have a resident in house to come up and see a patient. It's still stressful but after perusing the site, I feel lucky to be where I am.
  3. by   Nursebarebari
    I did ortho surgery for a year, the ratio was 1-6, but most of the time it was less. We had nurses Aid, 1 for 2 nurses, Wasn't bad.
  4. by   NJNursing
    We're an ortho/neuro floor, so we're surgical and tele. We can hold 32 patients (all private rooms) and up to 4 teles at a time. I work nights and we typically have < 29 patients and 4 nurses. Per hospital policy we cannot have 5 nurses until we have 30 patients and they always stop just one short to prevent giving us more staff. So needless to say we often have 7 or an occassional 8. Having 5 or 6 is like a dream....
  5. by   ortho
    No, We Have 6 Pt. Per Nurse [including Post-op]. We Have Cna,s. You Need To Move On To A Place That Cares About Their Nurses.
  6. by   JaredCNA
    From 11P-7A when I work, the staff nurses usually take 8 pts and the charge nurse will have 6.

    I'm usually the only CNA for 30 ortho patients, and half of our floor are joint replacements most times, and lately most of those joints have been bilat knees. I'm lucky to still be alive. lol
  7. by   RN and Mommy
    [font="georgia"]i work days and we are assigned 6-7 patients working directly with a cna who only has the same group of patients as i do. it is busy, but generally ok.
    eta: i just realized i already answered on this thread! i have been away for too long!
    Last edit by RN and Mommy on Mar 1, '08 : Reason: I am an idiot!
  8. by   emmakirst
    On our floor we have about 6-7 per nurse.
  9. by   JaredCNA
    Quote from sabrina's mommy
    [font="georgia"]i work days and we are assigned 6-7 patients working directly with a cna who only has the same group of patients as i do. it is busy, but generally ok.
    eta: i just realized i already answered on this thread! i have been away for too long!
    this is exactly what i wish we could do. but i don't think we have enough aides.

    i've done it once at night when the nurses called the supervisor and threatened safe harbor. instead of an extra nurse which was nowhere to be found, each nurse had their own cna.
  10. by   dimples38
    Boy I really fortunate after reading some of your posts. At our hospital, we built a patient care tower about 3 years ago. We went from a 28 bed unit to a 55 bed unit. We deal with ortho/neuro/trauma/general surgical/plastics/ and then of course the overflow medical patients also. The floor is set up in "pods" or "neighborhoods", each with 4-7 beds. The absolutely most our nurses have is 7 patients, and thank God that doesn't happen much anymore. We are almost at our wanted staffing- we had to do ALOT of hiring when we increased our unit. In the 4 pt. pods, it is usually an RN and an NA, sometimes, the NA will have to be split between 2 of the 4 pt. neighborhoods, but that is still really doable. With the 6 and 7 patient pods, we really like to have 2 RN's and an NA in those pods, one RN takes 4 pts., the other takes 3. We are also trying to have 2 RN's in our 6 pt. pods also. Usually they will not have an NA then. They will each have 3 patients and do primary nursing care. Our hospital has recently decided to eliminate LPN's, we still have a few left that are in RN school, so we usually place them where meds are the heaviest. I MUST tell the staff on our floor how fortunate and blessed we are. With the acuity of the patients these days, you need to have the RN knowledge and expertise to deal with these patients. The patients that we are taking care of on regular floors are the types of patients that were in the ICU's 19 years ago when I began nursing. KUDOS to all the ortho nurses, it is not an easy job!!
  11. by   bethvg82
    Wow. I feel really grateful to be working where I am after reading all these posts. I work on an ortho unit where we also get some med/surg patients, and we have a 5:1 ratio on days and a 6:1 ratio on nights. I believe the techs get 8 patients each. I don't know how some of you work under those conditions!
  12. by   sheisbb
    Hi, I'm a RN. I have had a short experience working in orthopaedic ward.

    In a normal day shift (morning and afternoon until 9pm), we have 5 RN and 4 LPN handling the ward load of 52 patients and some 12-15 extended beds. RNs are diveded into 3 groups, 2:2:1. each nurses is assiged from 13-15 patients per shift. For the night shift, there are only 2 RN and a LPN taking care of the whole ward. The ward occupancy is about 110% 11 months a year. The first night shift really horrified me. That night, it was a full full-house. I was assigned to 17 extended beds because i was new and those patients were 'ok'. Just imagine the vital sign taking, medication and reports to write! Luckily it's only a short 3 months rotation to orthopaedic ward before my new job assignment.
  13. by   yummo
    7 patients at night is standard for me.. way hectic... no matter what they say, patients dont sleep