Running head: SHORT STAFFING


Short staffing

Student’s name

Institutional affiliation



The nursing shortage is an issue that is facing healthcare organizations. With the demand for healthcare services, there is a need for more staff. Nurse staffing is significant as it reduces nursing burnouts. Nursing shortage impacts healthcare organizations negatively (Msn, 2018). Due to a shortage of nurses, patients may end up receiving late treatment hence reducing the quality of services provided.

Thesis statement: Nursing shortage is an increasing issue facing healthcare organization and this has led to problems such as risks of medication errors among others. Therefore, there is a great need to identify interventions that can be used in increasing high nurse-to-patient ratios.

Evidence-based solution

The evidence-based solution for this issue is reducing the nurse staffing ratio which will help in reducing the rate of medication errors. This solution will reduce burnout among nurses and increase satisfaction among nurses (Buerhaus et al., 2007).

Nursing intervention

The nursing shortage will require an increase in nurses to bridge the gap between the nurses and patient ratio. Increasing the number of nurses will improve the quality of care hence reducing issues such as medication errors.

Patient care

Nursing shortage leads to issues such as an increase in errors and higher mortality rates. Due to high patient-to-nurse ratios, nurses end up feeling dissatisfied hence patients may end up having a higher mortality rate.

Health care agency

The nursing shortage is an issue that is increasingly facing the healthcare industry today. Healthcare organizations face an increasing challenge to meet the demand for healthcare services while being faced with the challenge of having a nursing shortage.

Nursing practice

Health professionals, from physicians to registered nurses among others provide health care services based on their field. However, an insufficient supply of nurses in all fields has resulted in issues such as medication errors.



Today, there is an increase in medical errors in the healthcare system. Patients visit health care facilities for services that will improve their quality of life. This, however, has not been possible due to an increase in medical errors which results in more medical complications. These problems are associated with a high nurse-to-patient ratio. This paper addresses the relationship between nurse-to-patient rates and the risk of medication errors affecting the patient population in the medical surgery unit.


The intervention is to reduce the nurse-to-patient ratio. A reduced number of patients served by each nurse reduces issues such as fatigue, stress, and burnout among nurses. This hence improves the quality of services provided. Additionally, it reduces adverse events and the risk of medication errors in the surgery units.


The intervention will be compared to a case of no treatment to address medication errors. This problem may increase the risk of medication errors


Increasing the number of nurses will reduce cases of medication errors. This positive outcome will be attained by reducing nurse burnout


The outcome will be measured within a period of 12 months

The PICOT question: In the medical surgery unit population, how does reduction in the nurse-to-patient ration impact medication errors compared with no treatment within twelve months?












Buerhaus, P. I., Donelan, K., Ulrich, B. T., Norman, L., DesRoches, C., & Dittus, R. (2007). Impact of the nurse shortage on hospital patient care: Comparative perspectives. Health affairs26(3), 853-862.

Msn, T.L.C. (2018). No One Understands the Term, Nursing Shortage: Like a Nursing Student Does. Amazon Digital Services LLC – Kdp Print Us