The Effects of Institutional and Market Factors on Nurse Staffing in Acute Care Hospitals

의료기관과 시장특성이 간호사 확보수준에 미치는 영향

  • Published : 2007.06.30


Nurse staffing level is an important factor that influences the quality of health service and patient outcomes. This study was carried out to examine the current state of acute hospital nurse staffing and find out factors that affect the nurse staffing level. Nurse staffing of individual hospitals was measured using the number of registered nurses per 100 beds. Descriptive and multiple regression analyses were conducted using 592 acute care hospitals' data. Regression model included structure factors such as referral level, ownership, medical and general staffing, and financial outcome factors such as occupancy rate, inpatient and outpatient revenues. Market characteristics included strength of competition, supply of nurses, and income and health status level of consumers. The average number of nurses per 100 beds was 28 and showed a great variation according to the referral level. Regression model explained this variation as much as 76.87%. Hospital structure variables which affecting the hospital nurse staffing level positively were ICU bed ratio, the staffing level of specialist, training doctor and employees except doctor and nursing personnel, while the negative factor was nurse aid staffing level. General hospitals employed more nurses than hospitals. Among outcome characteristics, occupancy rate and the amount of health insurance inpatient revenue affected positively on the hospital nurse staffing level. The more supply of the new nurse and the higher consumer income and health status in the medical service markets, the more nurses were employed by the medical institutes. According to the study result, hospitals employed more nurses when they had more financial incentive by increasing nurses. This means appropriate hospital incentive policy and regulation policy, which hospital violate nurse staffing level have to pay penality, should be needed. Clarifying job description between nurses and nurse aids and the reentry program for unemployed experienced nurses will be helpful to increase nurse staffing level.


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