"Achievement of Safe Staffing hinges on accurate acuity data coming from nurses and midwives at the point of care."
Acuity is the measurement of the intensity of nursing care needed by a patient
Acuity-based staffing is about having the right number of nurses available at the right time to meet patients' needs for care.
Staffing that closely matches our patients' care needs 24 hours a day, seven days a week, is essential to achieving the best patient outcomes. Nursing rosters and budgets based on ‘real’ patient demand (i.e. patient acuity) for each individual ward can effectively provide this.
Nurses and midwives understand patients’ need for care better than anybody, and effective validated patient acuity systems like TrendCare are built on this foundation of expert nursing judgment.
Why is patient acuity data so important?
There is growing evidence that staffing based on accurate patient acuity data is an effective way to improve patient outcomes and increase staff satisfaction. Positive patient outcomes linked to acuity based staffing include decreases in mortality, adverse outcomes, and lengths of stay.
Importantly, acuity data also provides an opportunity to demonstrate the significant value nursing contributes to patient care. The CCDM programme uses patient acuity data in all components:
- The FTE calculation to determine the roster and the budget for each individual ward.
- Variance response management to:
a) ensure workloads are manageable,
b) respond to changes in capacity and demand on each shift and
c) forecast patient demand over time to ensure capacity is sufficient.
- The core data set to monitor staffing and patient outcomes.
Achievement of Safe Staffing hinges on accurate acuity data coming from nurses and midwives at the point of care.
This means Safe Staffing begins with you.