Addressing the Staffing Shortage: Why Should You Care?

11 Jan, 2024

With the impending nursing and allied healthcare shortages upon us, it is imperative to understand the crucial role staffing solutions play in providing quality care. In the following paragraphs, I will analyze the benefits that an adequate staffing model can have on improving patient-outcomes for the long-run – not just today.

According to American Nurse Today, “Even in the best-run healthcare organizations, staffing and scheduling are complex issues”. Although there is significant research surrounding the staffing shortage, it is essential for caregivers to have an understanding of each component that directly affects the staffing model. Implementing a strong staffing model not only results in improved patient outcomes, but also improves caregiver satisfaction, decreases burnout, and increases retention rates.

Each facility is unique in its specific model for delivering care to patients. Additionally, each unit within that facility has a different set of care requirements in order to maintain the highest quality of service. According to The American Nurses Association (ANA), “no single staffing model – patient acuity, budget-based, or nurse-patient ratio — is best for all settings and situations”. My organization’s care model heavily takes this information into consideration when developing a unique, personalized approach to provide solutions to hospitals of all sizes across the United States. 

By tailoring the staffing model to each organization’s needs, it paves the way for a more effective and quality-driven method of staffing. Essentially, maintaining a good nurse-to-patient ratio results in adequate staffing as well as standardizing the methods of care. Our MSP model is clinically driven to build capacity and maintain safe staffing levels. While short-term staffing solutions are helpful in the present, planning ahead will ultimately create a more sustainable system. Stat Staff Professionals caregivers play an important role in caring for the future of healthcare by providing quality patient care to hospitals during a time of critical nursing shortages.

Efforts to address the impending nursing shortage include maintaining appropriate staffing levels for each hospital, along with encouraging caregivers to take action and be a part of the on-going conversation. As a nurse, I have first-hand experience and understand how staffing shortages can negatively impact patient care. When nurses and allied healthcare professionals are short-staffed and work excessively long hours, it leads to burnout and increases the possibility for medical errors. This is why it is essential to have supplemental staffing as part of your organization’s workforce plan and staffing model.

According to the ANA, “the nursing workforce is key to tackling the problems our health care system faces”. From this one can conclude that caregivers play a vital role in the effectiveness of each staffing model. It is also clear that staffing solutions must change with the ever-changing healthcare system. In this sense, it is crucial for caregivers to take on leadership roles to help meet these demands in addition to supporting new nurses and allied health professionals entering into the field. The future of nursing is dependent upon having shared governance and a voice to help facilitate change in this dynamic and ever-changing healthcare landscape.