The effect of workload on infection risk in critically ill patients.
Approach to Improving Safety
Setting of Care
Lower nurse-to-patient ratios on hospital wards have been associated with an increased rate of post-surgical complications and an increased rate of overall complications of inpatient care. This single-center study evaluated the effect of changes in nurse staffing on nosocomial infection rates in the intensive care unit (ICU) and found that a slightly higher number of patients per nurse was associated with a significantly increased infection risk, after controlling for patient risk factors. The authors hypothesize that increased nursing workload may lead to breaches in infection control protocols.