“A Framework for Safe Nurse Staffing and Skill Mix in General and Specialist Medical and Surgical Care Settings in Adult Hospitals in Ireland” was launched in Dublin Castle on Monday 16 April.
The Framework focuses on delivering positive patient outcomes and creating a healthier and more attractive work environment for staff.
Speaking at the launch, Minister Harris said “This Framework sets out, for the first time in Ireland, the staffing requirements and skill mix needed in our hospital wards to achieve the best outcomes for patients. It will allow us to determine the appropriate number of nurses and healthcare assistants required for each ward, based on the number of patients and their particular needs, rather than solely on the ward size.
“Piloting of this Framework has demonstrated significant benefits for both patients and staff. The Framework led to increased quality of care, decreased length of stay in hospital and increased satisfaction with the care received, while staff reported an increase in job satisfaction. There has also been a sustained decrease, up to 95%, in the use of agency staff. I’m pleased to say that a promising trend in relation to reduced mortality rates has also begun to emerge.
“This Framework clearly works so the next step now is for the HSE to develop a national implementation plan, beginning with incremental implementation across our hospitals. I look forward to the outcome of this process.”
The framework was developed based on international research, consultation with key stakeholders and was piloted in three hospital sites; Beaumont Hospital, Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda and St Colmcilles Hospital, Loughlinstown.