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Medical Malpractice:every time a hospital increases the workload of a nurse by one patient, it increases the risk of an inpatient dying within 30 days of admission by 7%

nurses_understaffing.gif Nurse understaffing by negligent hospitals can lead to medical malpractice that affect patients outcome. A recent study compared the 30 day mortality rate of more than 400,000 patients over 50 years old who underwent surgery in 300 hospitals in 9 different European countries to nurse staffing and nurse education for each hospital.

The study found that an increase in a nurses’ workload by one patient increased the likelihood of an inpatient dying within 30 days of admission by 7% , and every 10% increase in bachelor’s degree nurses was associated with a decrease in this likelihood by 7%. These associations imply that patients in hospitals in which 60% of nurses had bachelor’s degrees and nurses cared for an average of six patients would have almost 30% lower mortality than patients in hospitals in which only 30% of nurses had bachelor’s degrees and nurses cared for an average of eight patients.

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