Less Support, Same Expectations: Nurses Working with Limited Resources
The nurse staffing crisis is no secret – and no laughing matter. An astounding 18% of nurses have resigned from jobs since 20201 , most citing burnout from COVID’s heightened risks and expectations. Many nurses who aren’t changing fields have transitioned from hospitals to travel work or to smaller medical practices.
For the registered nurses who remain at hospitals, it means less support than before as their employers struggle to fill vacant roles. Some even find themselves working alone in scenarios that call for more than one medical professional.
Sadly, such realities are not entirely new.
“We nurses have long shown incredible resilience and an ability to innovate and deliver despite less-than-ideal circumstances,” says Ariadne B. Cappuccio, RN, BSN, MSHA, CCRN, CEN, NE-BC and consultant to HoverTech. “The stakes these past two years have been higher, but it certainly is not the first time nurses have shown unmatched determination. Of course, in some scenarios, determination isn’t enough.”
Already more than 35,000 nurses experience back or skeletal injuries annually2 . That number is poised to rise as more and more nurses find themselves repositioning patients without proper assistance.
WHAT CAN NURSES DO?
Cappuccio encourages nurses to appeal to leadership – strategically, and as a unit.
“We encourage registered nurses to form committees and urge leadership to bring in support and products that help us provide essential care to patients in the best possible manner while also protecting ourselves,” she says.
This can include products that literally lighten the load, like air-assisted products from HoverTech. Both the HoverMatt® Single-Patient-Use (SPU) Air Transfer Mattress and the HoverSling® Repositioning Sheet use airflow technology to reduce the force needed to move a patient by an astounding 80 to 90%. With HoverTech, repositioning a 300-pound patient only requires the effort needed to move 30 to 60 pounds! It’s a saving grace for overextended nurses and technicians, dramatically decreasing injury risk while making repositioning more comfortable for patients, too. With HoverTech products, fewer staff is needed to perform repositioning tasks.
“Air assist products such as HoverTech’s have been proven to reduce staff injury,” Cappuccio says. “In the wake of the staffing crisis and the resulting widespread shortage among turn and lift teams, we are forced to think differently and to use products to help us perform more efficiently.”
Want to learn more about HoverTech products and resources? Please call our customer support line at (800) 471-2776, Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM EST.
 National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel. NPUAP position statement on staging – 2017 clarifications. National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel 2017. http://www.npuap.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/NPUAP-Position-Statement-on-Staging-Jan2017.pdf