At Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, we recognise that having the right number of nurses with the right skills in the right place at the right time is critical in our commitment to providing high quality, safe, person centred, compassionate care across all wards and departments.
From April 2014 It became a national requirement by NHS England, that all organisations with inpatient wards publish their nurse staffing data on a monthly basis and display daily data at ward level, where it is easily accessible to the public. The data collected is then uploaded to NHS Choices for public viewing on a monthly basis. The initiative was in response to the Francis Report and the Governments ‘Hard Truths’ document that followed the public enquiry.
What information are hospitals being asked to submit?
Hospitals are required to submit planned hours for each ward on each shift for registered nurses and heath care assistants. These are submitted alongside the actual hours worked, which ideally should be as close as possible to the planned hours.
Monthly Safe Staffing Report to the Board of Directors
Staffing report to inform the Trust Board of Directors on staffing capacity and capability across Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust wards.
How do we know the planned hours are right?
The information provided alone does not tell us if they were appropriate to deliver safe and effective care. In planning nurse staffing levels consideration of a number of other factors is required
Using the Safer Nursing Care Tool ( add link to implementation pack) these staffing levels are monitored against patient dependency and acuity three times daily, the data is submitted electronically ADD LINK to SNCT on health roster.
Senior nurses are experts in understanding the levels of care their patients need, they also understand the skills required and the number of nurses needed to deliver care safely.
How many patients are admitted and discharged throughout a 24hr period, the ward layout i.e. number of side rooms, how easy it is to observe patients and the distance travelled by nurses to deliver care and obtain the necessary resource and equipment are all important factors when considering the number of nurses required for each ward.
How many registered nurses do we have on each ward?
Research demonstrates that staffing levels are linked to the safety of care and that fewer staff can increase the risk of patient safety incidents occurring. There is no national guidance on the number of registered nurses there should be on a ward, it is however recognised that patient care is improved with a higher proportion of registered nurses as part of the nursing establishment.
How do we know we are consistently achieving safe nursing staffing levels on each ward?
Each day ward staffing levels are reviewed on every ward on a shift by shift basis. Senior nurses take responsibility for this to make sure they are staffed safely. This information is collected electronically on our health roster system and will be used to generate monthly reports to our Trust Board.
Each month a dashboard focused on quality and safety is generated looking at performance against a number of key factors that influence safe care. The report includes:
- Sickness and absence rates
- Numbers of bank and agency used
- Patient experience feedback
- Harm free care e.g. no. of pressure sores, no. of patients assessed against risk of developing clots
- Infection prevention and control
- Administration of medicines
Safe Staffing Return
Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Ward Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff.
Six Month Board Paper
Six month board paper for Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.