Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more


The big question: what do you consider to be safe staffing levels?


The Safe Staffing Alliance has been formed to demand mandatory nurse to patient ratios.

The alliance has stated that under no circumstances is it safe to care for patients in need of hospital treatment with a ratio of more than eight patients per registered nurse during the day on general acute wards, including those specialising in care for older people.

The group has also said that registered nurses must at all times be supported by a sufficient number of healthcare assistants and a senior registered nurse in charge of the ward.

Would you welcome mandatory staffing ratios? How many patients do you think a nurse should be caring for on a ward?


Readers' comments (3)

  • 18 bedded rest home 12 hour night shift with nursing care needs only one staff awake and one asleep.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • It is the QUALITY of dependency of the individual patient that should drive the staffing levels. This is very variable from one day to another depending on how often the patients arrive/leave or their condition alters. I feel it needs assessing every day at the same time which used to happen when I started my training in 1989. 8 patients that can wash and dress and toilet themselves may also have the same clinical needs ? speciality as 8 patients that need 2 nurses to wash dress and toilet themselves.
    Annie Norman. Patients First Scotland.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • I work on a small high dependency unit, 6 bedded. We work on the basis of 1 nurse to two level two patients and a nurse in charge, they are wanting the nurse in charge to now take two patients, as well as supporting staff and patients. Is this a safe number?

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.