STRESS WITH: patient ratios & duties.

Nurses Safety


A STRESSED NURSE ("My experience last night").

Place of Work: a large (Catholic) hospital run by nuns: that means a place where patients can get free healthcare in under-staff units from over-worked and under-paid nurses.


1. I had 11 patients to monitor.

2. I had a LVN to help me with only 6 out of 11 of my patients.

(no nursing aide available).

3. I did all the I.V. therapies of the 11 patients.


1) Medical-Surgical Unit.

2) 12 Hour Night Shift.

3) 5 out of 11 patients was primary care (ex. bedpans, bathe,

answering the call bells..etc).

4) 2 out of 11 Patients with TPNs.

5) 2 out of 11 patients on Isolations.

6) 1 out of 11 patients ask for MSO Q4hrs (through the whole


7) 1 out of 11 a "new" admission (took 2 hours - 3 pgs of


8) 1 out of 11 a "transfer".

9) 4 out of 11 patients received at least 3 IVPBs.

10) 1 out of 11 patients received 11 IVPBs through the night.

11) 1 out of 11 patients needed wound care.

12) 2 out of 11 patients diabetic: need blood sugar monitoring.

13) Took vital signs and I&O on 5 out of 11 of my patients.

14) Full charting on 5 out of 11 of my patients (physical


15) 1 out of 11 patients with tube feeding.


1. I was "floated" to this floor unit (I was not a regular staff and

unfamiliar paperwork).

2. The new admission I received was a mistake to my floor unit.

She should of been to Critical Care - told by my charge nurse,

and after I did 2 hours of work on the patient (admission

assessment and treatments). After the acknowledgement of

the mistake, patient was transferred.

3. I had no break -- only 5 minutes to go to the bathroom.

4. Most of the time, my charge nurse would smile at me and ask

me if I'm okay (my reply "no") - AND she would grimace when I

actually asked her for help, such as hanging an IVPB for me.

One of her replies was, "I need to take my break".

** Please, what is your comment to this? **

** What was your "stressed" patient ratio and duties? **

** GET IT ALL OUT !! **

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