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How Mandated Nurse-to-Patient Ratios in Queensland Hospitals Will Improve Patient Outcomes
The alteration in nurse-to-patient ratio across the hospitals reciprocally influences the pattern of patient safety and associated healthcare outcomes (Shekelle, 2013). The improvement in the pattern of nurse staffing reduces the length of patients' stay in the hospitals and decreases their hospital mortality rates (Shekelle, 2013).
Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches to Research
The qualitative research methodology systematically utilizes idealistic and humanistic approaches for evaluating the research subject (Pathak, Jena, & Kalra, 2013). The objective of undertaking qualitative intervention attributes to the evaluation of the pattern of people's interactions, behaviour, attitudes, experiences and beliefs in the absence of concrete numerical analysis. Qualitative research approach assists in generating the outcomes that might not be obtained while measuring the variables. For example, the behavioural evaluation of human subjects is never feasible through variables assessment (Pathak, Jena, & Kalra, 2013). The quantification of human behaviour appears impractical in the evidence-based research literature, and therefore, qualitative interventions emphasize the subjective assessment of human behaviour through the extensive analysis of data while systematically increasing user participation. However, the quantitative research strategy focuses on undertaking the numerical analysis of facts and figures for generating the desirable outcomes (Jack, et al., 2010). Research data evaluated through quantitative strategy include numerical variables requiring analysis through inferential and descriptive statistical tools for retrieving study results (Jack, et al., 2010). The quantitative research approaches assist in collating the numerical data from elevated sample sizes with the utilization of structured interventions (Babbie, 2017). Quantitative interventions might require replication in the context of their authenticity, as justified by the evidence-based literature. The quantitative research study warrants its systematic pre-configuration prior to the collection of the study data (Babbie, 2017). The collected data in the form of figures, charts, tables and numbers require systematic analysis through software like SPSS. The wide analysis of concepts, evaluation of causal relationships between variables and prediction of results is made feasible with the utilization of quantitative research approaches (Babbie, 2017).
Utilization of Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches in Knowledge Elevation of the Practice Issue
The nurse-to-patient ratio across the Queensland hospitals indicates the number of midwives or nurses associated with any medical unit in comparison to the number of admitted patients (OCNMO_QG, 2016a). The Queensland government has mandated the requirement of effectively maintaining the nurse-to-patient ratio in the medical facilities with the objective of providing quality healthcare services to the admitted patients (OCNMO, 2016). Queensland’s government mandate specifies the requirement of a single nurse professional for every four patients in the morning shift and one nurse for each of the seven patients in the night shift (OCNMO, 2016). The methodological analysis of the quantitative, qualitative and mixed research interventions by (Massey, Chaboyer, & Anderson, 2017) explored the frequency of the responses of the nurse professionals against the pattern of patient deterioration. The integrated research intervention focused on the identification of the research issue, data assessment and analysis, as well as interpretation based on the extended review of the evidence-based literature. Research outcomes revealed the requirement of timely assessment of the treated patients, evaluation of their clinical history, as well as skills regarding utilizing medical equipment for evaluating the pattern of patients’ deterioration in the clinical wards. The patient-to-nurse ratio failed to reflect the ward environment; however, the study findings revealed the requirement of effective optimization of nurse to patient ratio for the timely assessment and treatment of the admitted patients. The observational analysis of the cross-sectional patient care data obtained from multiple hospitals revealed the reciprocal relationship between patient satisfaction rates and nurse-to-patient ratios across the medical facilities (Kutney-Lee, et al., 2009). The improved pattern of nurse-physician collaboration and work environment for nurses under the influence of elevated levels of nurse staffing leads to the enhancement of inpatient care strategies and associated wellness outcomes (Kutney-Lee, et al., 2009). This affirms the effectiveness of the optimized nurse-to-patient ratios in improving healthcare outcomes across clinical settings. The dynamic cohort intervention by (Rochefort, Buckeridge, & Abrahamowicz, 2015) evaluated the pattern of adverse reactions experienced by patients (during their inpatient stay as well as post-discharge tenure) and its relationship with the nurse-to-patient ratio in the hospital setting. The findings of this quantitative research intervention evidentially revealed the influence of optimized nurse staffing levels on the risk of patients in terms of experiencing adverse events during their stay in the inpatient units and after undertaking hospital discharges. The research intervention's nested case-control strategy revealed the adverse influence of inexperienced nursing staff and below-average nurse-to-patient ratio on the adverse patient outcomes in the clinical setting. The qualitative analysis by (Bradley, Kamwendo, Chipeta, Chimwaza, Pinho, & McAuliffe, 2015) investigated the pattern of decreased nurse-to-patient ratio as well as inefficient nurse staffing on the emotional deterioration of nurses and midwives in the healthcare settings. The findings evidentially revealed the adverse influence of the deterioration in the nurse-to-patient ratio on the consistent gaps observed in obstetric care management (Bradley, Kamwendo, Chipeta, Chimwaza, Pinho, & McAuliffe, 2015). The findings reveal the requirement of improving the efficiency as well as the percentage of nurse professionals and other healthcare workers in the clinical facilities for improving their operational efficiency and associated obstetric care outcomes (Bradley, Kamwendo, Chipeta, Chimwaza, Pinho, & McAuliffe, 2015). The analysis of the qualitative as well as quantitative approaches, reveals the requirement of optimization of nurse-to-patient ratios for enhancing the quality of life and healthcare outcomes of the patient population. The endorsement of the required nurse-to-patient ratio is necessarily warranted in Queensland hospitals for improving the quality of patient care approaches, and effective reduction in the length of patients stay in the inpatient settings.
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