New Study Debunks Myth that Use of Supplemental Nurses Negatively Affects Patient Satisfaction

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Alexandria, VA, March 5, 2015—“Overall patient satisfaction with care and evaluations of quality of nurse communications are not affected by the employment of supplemental (temporary or contract) nurses to permanent nurses, according to a new, first-of-its-kind study led by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.” Satisfaction levels are assessed according to how patients would rate their hospital experiences or whether they would recommend their particular hospitals to loved ones.

“Patient satisfaction is a valid and vital component of quality of care,” said researcher Linda H. Aiken, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, FRCN, with the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research, University Pennsylvania. “This groundbreaking study helps debunk the myth that the use of supplemental nurses negatively impacts patient quality of care or satisfaction.”

Published in the March issue of the Journal of Nursing Administration, the study, “Hospital Employment of Supplemental Registered Nurses and Patients’ Satisfaction of Care,” analyzed cross-sectional data from registered nurses in 427 hospitals in four states that were linked to American Hospital Association data and patient data from the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems survey developed by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

“This study confirms that the use of supplemental nurses is a sound strategy for medical institutions to employ to maintain appropriate nurse to patient staffing levels and ensure high levels of patient satisfaction and patient care,” said Richard Wahlquist, ASA president and chief executive officer.

Read the report.

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