7 Ways that Nurse Staffing Impacts Profitability

Source: Marcia Faller, AMN Healthcare, September 23, 2009

Because quality is increasingly linked to a hospital’s financial health, adverse outcomes related to inadequate staffing will have a growing impact on a hospital’s bottom line. The most direct example of the quality-finance link can be seen in the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) 2008 Inpatient Prospective Payment System rules, which state that hospitals will no longer be reimbursed for any patient care needed as a result of a hospital-acquired condition, such as certain mistakes called “never events.” Many of these events can be directly tied to or influenced by nursing care. A study, done by the American Nurses Association in 2000, showed that hospital-acquired events like postoperative infections, urinary tract infections, pneumonia and pressure ulcers were preventable conditions that could be reduced with increased nurse staffing.

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