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Nursing Malpractice – JAMA Finds a Relationship Between Patient Mortality and Nurse Staffing Levels

Nursing Malpractice can occur with a high patient to staff ratio. Hospitals with high patient to nurse ratios experience a higher mortality rate among surgical patients according to the Journal of the American Medical Society (JAMA).  Below are results of a study conducted by JAMA.

After adjusting for patient and hospital characteristics (size, teaching status, and technology), each additional patient per nurse was associated with a 7% (odds ratio [OR], 1.07; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.03-1.12) increase in the likelihood of dying within 30 days of admission and a 7% (OR, 1.07; 95% CI, 1.02-1.11) increase in the odds of failure-to-rescue. After adjusting for nurse and hospital characteristics, each additional patient per nurse was associated with a 23% (OR, 1.23; 95% CI, 1.13-1.34) increase in the odds of burnout and a 15% (OR, 1.15; 95% CI, 1.07-1.25) increase in the odds of job dissatisfaction.
Conclusions  In hospitals with high patient-to-nurse ratios, surgical patients experience higher risk-adjusted 30-day mortality and failure-to-rescue rates, and nurses are more likely to experience burnout and job dissatisfaction.
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