Staffing levels and patient outcomes

Nurs Manag (Harrow). 2009 Oct;16(6):22-3. doi: 10.7748/nm2009.


There is considerable evidence of an association between nurse staffing levels and patient outcomes. The evidence has been used to support calls for mandatory nurse-patient ratios although the precise significance of the relationship remains unclear. In this article, the evidence is examined to establish what is known and, crucially, what is not known about this relationship.

MeSH terms

  • England
  • Humans
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Nursing Staff, Hospital / statistics & numerical data*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Workload*