Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP
Call for a Free Consultation

Delaware’s Injury And Medical Malpractice Leaders

Why we should all be concerned about the U.S. nursing shortage

Every day in hospitals around Wilmington and throughout the country, nurses are on the front lines of patient care. During their education to become healthcare professionals, nurses are trained in how to help treat, diagnose, assist and care for patients. Much of a nurse's training and experience, however, are gained on the job as nurses comfort scared patients, help educate patients about health risks and hold the hands of dying patients.

Given the significant and varied roles fulfilled by nurses in U.S. hospitals, reports of a widespread nursing shortage are especially concerning. According to the American Nurses Association, factors contributing to the apparent nursing shortage include an aging workforce, improved access to healthcare and the aging baby boomer generation.

For Delaware residents, the nursing shortage translates to a higher patient to nurse ratio. Many people don't likely spend too much time contemplating the nursing shortage, that is until a loved one or they themselves are negatively impacted. Studies show a direct link between "patient outcomes and nurses' workload." For example, a study by the American Association of Critical Care Nurses revealed that inadequate nursing staff levels adversely impact the safety and survival rates of cardiac arrest patients.

Common sense would dictate that as a nurse's workload and patient assignments increase, he or she is more likely to make medical errors. Additionally, a nurse who is continually overloaded with patients is more likely to experience burnout which, according to National Nurses United, often results increasing levels of frustration, anger, fatigue, ambivalence and guilt all which have a negative effect on patient safety.

Source: Fierce Healthcare, "Nurses afraid to speak out about dangerous staff shortages," Leslie Small, May 28, 2015

National Nurses United, "Beating the burnout: Nurses struggle with physical, mental and emotional exhaustion at work," Lisa Ermak, Jan. 26, 2014

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Get The Legal Help You Need

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

This site uses Google's Invisible reCAPTCHA, which is subject to Google's Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Email Us For A Response

Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP
Rodney Square
1000 North King Street
Wilmington, DE 19801

Toll Free: 888-395-7576
Fax: 302-571-1253
Wilmington Law Office Map