Decreased Nursing Staffing Adversely Affects Emergency Department Throughput Metrics

Zachariah Ramsey, MD; Joseph S. Palter, MD; John Hardwick, MD; Jordan Moskoff, MD; Errick L. Christian, MS; John Bailitz, MD


Western J Emerg Med. 2018;19(3):496-500. 

In This Article


Decreased nursing hours correlated to an increased ED LOS for discharged patients and increased LWBS rate. This analysis is a pivotal step in identifying and ensuring appropriate nurse staffing to optimize ED quality metrics. Further analysis may illustrate an ideal number of nursing hours per day for maximum benefit, but would likely require breaking down data into specific shifts. Future research may examine the cost impact of increased nursing hours compared to lost revenue from patients who LWBS. Finally, understanding the impact of nurse staffing on patient satisfaction is another area ripe for further study.