Archive for June, 2012

Nursing Staff Shortages and Nursing Home Neglect

By Sherri L. Warfel

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing the United States is projected to have a nursing shortage that is expected to grow worse as baby boomers age and the need for health care grows.

In an online poll of nurses conducted by the American Nurses Association (ANA) nearly three quarters of the participants reported insufficient staffing at their workplace.

So what effects do these shortages have on patient care?  The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality indicates that facilities with low nurse staffing levels tend to have higher rates of poor patient outcomes with patient safety and quality of care on the decline.  Studies indicate that lower nurse staffing levels are associated with an increase in hospital acquired infections (such as MRSA and C-diff), pressure ulcers and falls.  Nursing home patients are especially susceptible to neglect because unlike acute care patients, long-term patients are more directly affected by the care and relationships they have with the nursing home staff.

Moreover, the same ANA poll referenced above indicated that more than half (52%) of the nurses report that the quality of care on their unit had declined, and half said they would not feel confident having someone close to them receive care in their facility.

If you or someone you love has suffered from pressure ulcers, fractures or another manner of nursing home neglect call an attorney at 609-520-0900 for a no-cost consultation.