A SUB-OPTIMAL PATIENT ASSIGNMENT PROCESS
Can a sub-optimal patient assignment process be preventing your unit or department from delivering quality care?
Let’s face it. Managing the patient assignment process day-in and day-out is not easy. It requires not only balancing nurse schedules, but it also means attempting to factor in patient acuity, geography and a host of other variables that affect care. There’s also the human factor of trying balance workloads so they are fair, equitable and don’t result in overburdened workloads.
This is not a trivial matter either.
Burnout is a significant problem in nursing today and workload is a big reason.
In one study, researchers summarized their observations this way: …a heavy nursing workload adversely affects patient safety. Furthermore, it negatively affects nursing job satisfaction and, as a result, contributes to high turnover and the nursing shortage.1
In another study, researchers said “there is a direct relationship between nurses’ workload, patient outcomes and nurse-reported quality of care.”2
The simple reality is – assigning patients is difficult and can have a tremendous impact on nursing workloads and workflow.