According to a recent study conducted by Boston College’s Connell School of Nursing, the level of nurse staffing can have a noticeable impact on hospital patients' satisfaction with the pain management they receive.
In her article, published in the Pain Management Nursing journal, Connell School of Nursing (CSON) Associate Professor Judith Shindul-Rothschild, noted that “The findings highlight the need for adequate numbers of nursing staff to achieve optimal patient satisfaction with pain management. In addition, having a prescriber (physician or nurse practitioner) available 24/7 to offer continuity of care is essential.”
The Connell School team examined how the hospital environment, staffing levels and the quality of nursing care factors were associated with patient satisfaction with pain control. The hospitals studied where in California, Massachusetts and New York and the data was from the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Health Care Providers Systems survey.
"Given the opioid crisis, pain management is front and centre in health care today," added Shindul-Rothschild. "We need to think very critically of how we are managing pain, how we are communicating with patients, and how members of treatment teams are communicating with each other."
Teaching hospitals and a higher number of residents and interns were associated with poor pain control, according to the researchers.
"In addition to appropriate nurse staffing, our study highlights that an essential component to improve patients' satisfaction with pain management is to promote more effective collaboration among medical trainees, hospitalists, and nurses," said Shindul-Rothschild.
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