Good Lord! I know this is a year late, but I really hope you got through that rough time! I don't know how you did it! With 10 pts there is absolutely no time to learn or know anything about your patients or time to safely assess them.
I happened to come across this article while researching patient ratios/staffing laws/staffing disclaimers throughout the country. When I started nursing in 2008 (in CA), I was on tele. Some nights I would have four patients which is perfectly easy and do-able, then other nights, according to state law, as long as I was with another "license" (in this case an LVN who couldn't assess, chart, start, or hang IVs), I would have 8. It was absolutely the most scary and unsafe thing I have ever experienced. This unit had heavy acuity patients, frequently transferred to PCU or ICU, and here I was a brand-new grad with EIGHT SHIFTS of orientation and eight patients. I got out of there as soon as I could to ICU where we only have 2 patients :)
I'm curious to know what you ended up doing. I'm still in CA and working in SICU at a research hospital that is sooo strict and by-the-book when it comes to staffing laws. Nobody is allowed to miss a break or lunch and once you have more than 5 titratable drips on your patient it's a 1:1. Do you think staffing laws would improve morale, decrease burnout, improve productivity, reduce mistakes, etc.?