FACT: Research shows registered nurse care saves the health care system money

Research shows that the cost of safe staffing models has the potential to be entirely recuperated at the institutional level. This follows from proven links between increased nurse staffing and reduced length of stay, readmission, patient morbidity, medication errors and nurse turnover.

Appropriate registered nurse staffing is a means to effectively bend the cost curve.

Having a higher proportion of registered nurses in the staffing mix has been associated with decreased negative patient outcomes, increased patient safety and satisfaction with care, while not necessarily increasing costs.

  1. Needleman, J., Buerhaus, P., Maureen, S., Zelevinsky, K. & Mattke, S. (2006). Nurse staffing in hospitals: Is there a business case for quality? Health Affairs, 25(1), 204-211.

  2. Dall, T., Chen, Y., Seifert, R., Maddox, P. & Hogan, P. (2009). Medical Care 47(1), 97-104; and Shamliyan, T., Kane, R., Mueller, C., Duval, S., Wilt, T. (2009). Cost savings associated with increased RN staffing in acute care hospitals: simulation exercise. Nursing Economics, 27(5), 302-14.   

Shamliyan, T., Kane, R., Mueller, C., Duvall, S. & Wilt, T. (2009). Cost savings associated withincreased RN staffing in acute care hospitals: A simulation exercise. Nursing Economic$, 27(5), 302-331.  

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