Direct registered nurse care provides benefits to long-term care residents

McGregor, M.J., Murphy, J.M., Poss, J.W., McGrail, K.M., Kuramoto, L., Huang, H. & Stirling, B. (2015). 24/7 registered nurse staffing coverage in Saskatchewan nursing homes and acute hospital use. Canadian Journal on Aging, 34(4), 492-505.

Long term care facilities (LTC) in Saskatchewan with 24/7 RN coverage were compared to those with non 24/7 RN coverage. That is, facilities that utilized LPNs or Care Aides to cover night shifts instead of having a RN present. The study found that risks associated with less-than-24/7 RN coverage and substituting with LPNs or care aides for night shifts were associated with significantly higher incidence of transfer to emergency departments and increased inpatient hospital admissions.  Findings suggest that acute care services utilization may be negatively influenced by the absence of 24/7 RN coverage. Findings also suggest there may be empirical evidence to support 24/7 RN on-site presence in LTC facilities. 

Related research: 

Bostick, J.E. (2004). Relationship of nursing personnel and nursing home care quality. Journal of Nursing Care Quality, 19(2), 130-136.

Horn, S.D., Buerhaus, P., Bergstrom, N. & Smout, R.J. (2005). RN staffing time and outcomes of long-stay nursing home residents. American Journal of Nursing, 105(11), 58-71.

Horn, S.D., Buerhaus, P., Bergstrom, N. & Smout, R.J. (2005). RN staffing time and outcomes of long-stay nursing home residents. American Journal of Nursing, 105(11), 58-71.

Weech-Maldonado, R., Meret-Hanke, L., Neff, M.C. & Mor, V. (2004). Nurse staffing patterns and quality of care in nursing homes. Health Care Management Review, 29(2), 107-116.

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