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The Importance of Safe Staffing in Healthcare

As the number of elderly patients entering nursing homes increases, our healthcare system will begin to face (even more so than right now) the challenge of adequate staffing. Staffing shortages can be a result of many things including an increase in aging patients, budget cuts, complexity and duration of patient care, and even workplace stress. There are many studies and evidence that show that appropriate nurse staffing contributes towards better patient outcomes and overall patient and employee satisfaction. However, the gap between hospitals and nursing facilities and safe staffing measures continues to grow.

Safe staffing means that an appropriate number of nurses and aides are readily available at all times to deliver continuing care to patients in every healthcare setting. In addition to presence and availability, safe staffing indicates that nurses and aides have appropriate levels of education, experience, and specialized skills to meet the care needs of their patients. Appropriate staffing measures ensure that nurses and aides are able to deliver safe and effective care in any setting.

In order to combat staffing shortages, facilities can:

1) Create and follow a formal staffing plan

2) Reduce employee turnover by valuing nurses and aides in their daily jobs

3) Work with a staffing agency to fill staffing gaps

Safe staffing is essential not just to patients and their caregivers, but to the overall healthcare system as a whole. By reducing staffing shortages, hospitals and nursing facilities can better care for their own employees AND the patients they serve. If your facility is facing staffing shortages, call Kindcare at (866) 62-STAFF for kind, quality temps who will serve alongside your own employees to deliver the care you expect for your patients.

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