Application of Systems Theory in Amsterdam Nursing Home
Shortage of nurses has increasingly been a problem in the United States hospitals for a long time. Currently the statistics indicate a 7.2% shortage with a possibility of this increasing further shortly. The increasing old age population in the United States has led to an increasing need for nursing staff in many hospitals in the country (Campbell, Bawden, & Duncan, 2017). Amsterdam Nursing Home is one of the largest health facilities in the country with over 600 beds that require adequate nursing staff. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that between 2014 and 2022 the country will realize a nursing shortage of 1.2 million staffs which will affect every healthcare facility (Buerhaus, Donelan, Ulrich, Norman, DesRoches & Dittus, 2007). Systems theory is used in understanding how organizations operate through an energetic input and output system that ensures stability and sustainability of processes. This essay analyses shortage of nursing staff in Amsterdam Nursing Home.
Meyer & O’Brien-Pallas (2010) suggest that a system way of thinking views an organization as consisting of inputs, throughput, output, cycles of events, and negative feedback that are related to keeping the whole system running. Inputs will consist of the nursing staff that are employed by the organization, the patients they serve and other materials like documentation and supplies that are used as tools by the nurses. Throughput entails the system processes that patients go through from registration into the facility all the way to discharge time. Since there are limited nursing staff, one nurse is supposed to handle only one station but Amsterdam nursing home has situations where one patient handles more than one station thus keeping some patients waiting.
Outputs are the benefits that patients realize from the hospital. Due to lack off enough nursing staff, the hospital reports delays in serving patients which affect the overall output level of the organization. System as a cycle of events entails sustainability of the system through repeat the same activities over similar output characteristics or new characteristics (Carter A.J.E. & Chochinov, 2007). There are standard nursing procedures like collecting patient information to allocate a physician. Since the processes are standardized, they are repeated activities that have to be done every time a new case is administered. Negative feedback systems are used to improve system running through analyzing performance indicators. Amsterdam Nursing home has a feedback mechanism for analyzing how the organization performs (Amsterdam Nursing Home, 2017).
Shortage of nurses is one of policy issues affecting the healthcare system in the United States (Buchan & Aiken, 2010). This means that the hospital has to develop plans to address the clinical shortage through utilizing the available human resource personnel. Hiring new nurses may not be the best solution since the country is encountering a nursing shortage. Systems theory approaches this issue by identifying the organization as an open system with inputs and outputs. Under normal circumstances, inputs and outputs need to be balanced to achieve stability and sustainability of the system. This is through a set of outcomes, goals, objectives and professional standards that can be put in place to address staff shortage without necessarily hiring new ones.
a) Reduced patient waiting time.
b) Reduced time spend by patients in every station.
c) Increased collaboration between nurses and other healthcare professions.
d) Patient booking system to reduce waiting time.
a) To increase nursing efficiency through balancing of nursing care with the available patient ration in Amsterdam Nursing Home within one year.
b) To reduce the workload on nurses through developing efficient management tools that can be applied within the setting.
a) To reduce the average time spend by patients in every nursing station from the current time to an average of below five minutes by the end of three months.
b) To increase nursing care by developing an online booking system where patients can book appointments and be scheduled depending on the number of patients on the nurse appointment list.
c) To train nurses after every year on new nursing methods and tools to increase efficiency.
d) To rotate nurses between stations on a monthly basis to reduce monotony and workload of specific stations.
e) To establish a close link between nurses and other physicians to ensure nurses learn what happens in other areas of healthcare to speed up information processing.
- Nurses are supposed to use available resources to reduce patient waiting time to below five minutes on average.
- Patients will use the online booking system to book themselves with a healthcare practitioner to reduce waiting time.
- The hospital will train all nurses on a yearly basis and provide relevant tools to increase nursing efficiency.
- Nurses will only work in one station for a maximum of one month and then reallocated to another station within the hospital.
- Nurses will work closely with other practitioners to increase information processing.
Relevant professional standards
Amsterdam Nursing Home is established on a tradition of caring philosophy which focusses on providing the best care. Improved nursing strategies will increase output levels which yield better results. Through management of nursing stations, the hospital will achieve the best results since patients will be satisfied and thus increasing organizational capabilities (Buerhaus, et al., 2007). The proposed strategies seek to increase nursing efficiency through establishing mechanisms and structures that can increase nursing efficiency despite the fact that fact the hospital is facing nursing staff shortages. These strategies seek to establish system changes to allow the hospital adapt the new challenges. System theory is based on a system way of thinking where the organization needs to adapt to new changes that the system experiences.
Amsterdam Nursing Home. (2017). A Tradition of Caring . Retrieved from Amsterdam Nursing Home: http://amsterdamcares.com/index.html#welcome
Buchan, J., & Aiken, L. (2010). Solving nursing shortages: a common priority. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 17(24), 3262-3268.
Buerhaus, P. I., Donelan, K., Ulrich, B. T., Norman, L., DesRoches, C., & Dittus, R. (2007). Impact Of The Nurse Shortage On Hospital Patient Care:Comparative Perspectives. Health Affairs, 26(3), 853-862.
Campbell, D., Bawden, A., & Duncan, P. (2017, June 7). Revealed: scale of hospital staff shortages in top Tory areas. The Guardian.
Carter A.J.E. & Chochinov, A. (2007). A systematic review of the impact of nurse practitioners on cost, quality of care, satisfaction and wait times in the emergency department. Canadian Journal of Emergency Medicine, 9(4), 286-295.
Meyer, R. M., & O’Brien-Pallas, L. L. (2010). Nursing Services Delivery Theory: an open system approach. Journal oF Advanced Nursing, 66(12), 2828–2838.