In BMJ Open, Linda Aiken and colleagues examine how patient perceptions of hospital care are associated with confidence in nurses and doctors, nurse staffing levels, and hospital work environments in National Health Service (NHS) hospitals in England. The authors use national survey data from over 66,000 hospital patients and nearly 3,000 inpatient nurses for their analysis.
The authors find that patients have a high level of trust and confidence in RNs, but only 60 percent of patients indicated that there were enough RNs to care for them. The importance of adequate RN staffing to patients is evident in their responses - 57 percent of patients who indicated that there were always, or nearly always, enough RNs to care for them rated care as excellent, compared with only 14 percent of the patients who said there were rarely or never enough RNs to care for them. The findings suggest that reducing missed nursing care by ensuring adequate RN staffing and improved clinical care environments are promising strategies for enhancing patient satisfaction.