Member feedback and research strengthens case for safe staffing

The Lamp June2010

The NSWNA has interviewed NUMs at almost all public hospitals in NSW to substantiate our claim for safe staffing ratios.

Over the past few weeks 30 NSWNA Officers have hit the road to visit public hospitals across NSW to conduct in depth interviews with NUMs about safe staffing and skill mix on their wards.

Using the research tool developed by experts on nursing skill mix and workplace research, Professors Christine Duffield and John Buchanan, the NSWNA conducted face-to-face interviews with NUMs at 96 public hospitals and phone interviews at 97 hospitals in selected specialties.

The NSWNA also visited or contacted many community health centres, in-patient mental health centres and community health centres across NSW.

The feedback from NUMs will substantiate our 2010 Campaign claim for a mandated nurse/midwife to patient ratio to ensure the delivery of safe patient care.

The interviews with NUMs will inform the development of ratio models for the specialty areas of general medical/surgical wards, palliative care, rehabilitation, Emergency Departments, community health and mental health.

‘We’ve received resounding support from NUMs for our claim for a mandated staff ratio to ensure safe staffing on their wards,’ said NSWNA Assistant General Secretary Judith Kiejda.

This extensive qualitative research builds on the data collected by the NSWNA earlier in the year on current staffing ratios and skill mix.

‘During this period of intensive research, most NSWNA Officers have been on the road visiting public hospitals and members may have experienced delays in having their usual phone calls and queries responded to. I’d like to thank members for their patience and consideration over the past month,’ said Judith.

Thanks for your valuable feedback …

Some of the NUMs from NSW hospitals who have provided feedback for Campaign 2010

Westmead Hospital ED, NUM, Lisa Dillon

Bega Hospital Maternity Unit, NUM, Simone Shaw

Shellharbour Hospital Medical Respiratory Unit, NUM, Scott Lang

Shoalhaven Hospital Rehabilitation Unit, NUM, Lynn Hewitt

Bega Hospital ED, NUM, Cathy Boyle

Shoalhaven Hospital Medical Ward, NUM, Gordon McKeown