A audit of nursing staff will be carried out at every hospital ward around the country, in a new plan announced by the Health Minister.
It will evaluate the number and type of nurses needed in each ward. Simon Harris says it will change the way wards are staffed, improve patient outcomes, reduce agency spend and increase job satisfaction.
Speaking at the launch in Dublin Castle today, 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.
The framework was developed based on international research and was piloted in three hospital sites; Beaumont Hospital, Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital, Drogheda and St Colmcilles Hospital, Loughlinstown.