The Argument for Statutory Staffing Limits in Nursing Argumentative Essay by Nicky

An argument in support of pending H.R. Bill 2123 that calls for statutory staffing limits in nursing.
# 151239 | 944 words | 4 sources | APA | 2012 | US
Published on May 30, 2012 in Medical and Health (Nursing) , English (Argument)

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The paper addresses three main reasons to support H.R. 2123, namely, it will directly improve the relative quality and effectiveness of nursing care, it will directly reduce the nursing shortage by reducing the attrition rate of nurses and it will increase the vocational satisfaction of nurses. The paper argues that the negative consequences associated with understaffed nursing units absolutely require the establishment of formal limits of patient-to-staff ratios in hospitals. The paper includes a look at the advocates of this bill, those in opposition and the financial considerations involved.

Opening Statement
Financial Considerations
Job Satisfaction for Nurses
Benefits for Patients
Summary of Reasons to Support the Bill
Closing Statement

From the Paper:

"Since the 1990s, nursing staff cutbacks have been one of the principal mechanisms used by hospital administrators to reduce overhead costs (Gordon, Buchanan, & Bretherton, 2008; Reid, 2009). During that time, the incidence of medical errors in clinical settings has increased proportionately and numerous empirical studies have firmly established the direct causal connection between overstaffing in nursing units and the incidence of medical errors attributable to nurses. The data suggest that when nurses are responsible for more than four patients at a time, the general risk of patient mortality actually increases by 7 percent. More particularly, when nurses are responsible for eight patients the risk of death within the first month following surgery increases by more than 30 percent for surgical patient (Gordon, Buchanan, & Bretherton, 2008).
"The problem continues to get worse because increased workloads caused by reduced staff-to-patient ratios significantly reduce job satisfaction among nurses, leading to professional burnout and further reductions in the numbers of trained professional nurses. California is the first state to impose statutory limits on nurse-to-patient ratios and the measurable improvement resulting from that approach has prompted other states to follow that example. The pending H.R. Bill 2123 is intended to establish necessary uniformity in those standards to improve patient care and nursing retention in hospitals on a nationwide basis."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Gordon, S., Buchanan, J., Bretherton, T. (2008). Safety in Numbers: Nurse-to-Patient Ratios and the Future of Health Care. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
  • Kennedy, E. (2006). America Back on Track. New York: Viking.
  • Reid, T. (2009). The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care. New York: Penguin Group.
  • Taylor, C., Lillis, C., and LeMone, P. (2005). Fundamentals of Nursing: The Art and Science of Nursing Care. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Williams, and Wilkins.

Cite this Argumentative Essay:

APA Format

The Argument for Statutory Staffing Limits in Nursing (2012, May 30) Retrieved March 31, 2020, from

MLA Format

"The Argument for Statutory Staffing Limits in Nursing" 30 May 2012. Web. 31 March. 2020. <>