Let us be clear, diluting the skill mix results in poorer outcomes for patients. Good otcomes are clearly associated with having a high proportion of RNs providing direct care to patients. The research evidence for this is ever increasingly compelling.
Interesting to see a particular level of nurse identified in this way. Way back this was normal practice in my London Teaching Hospital (Guys). Both our name badge and uniform clearly designated year of training for student nurses and for RNs whether just qualified, Junior Staff Nurse (Purple Belt) or one year post qualification , Senior Staff Nurse (Black Belt). Whether patients understood these nuances is open to question.
This is a sound, careful piece of research which adds furhter weight to previous findings. Its results need to be taken seriously. They cannot be dismisssed because they do not fit our own experience. Having planned nursing establishments and rotas I find it difficult to believe anyone is routinely workig a day shift after a night shift. If so it needs to be reported.
We now need a cost-benefit analysis to identify costs against the presumed benefits from reductions in numbers of staff needed and therefore their salary costs.
Now there’s a surprise! The evidence has been around for ages.
More evidence that having sufficient RNs ensures better patient outcomes. Yet government and professional leaders continue to support the introduction of less qualified staff. Yes I know we lack sufficient RNs but unless we set having that as our goal we never will.