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Staffing and Code of Ethics in Nursing

Centralized Staffing in Nursing

Health institutions can use centralized staffing to deliver quality care to their clients. This approach is advantageous because it ensures every unit has the right number of nurses. Challenges can be addressed directly by the top department. The method can also be used to promote evidence-based care delivery. On the other hand, the staffing approach is disadvantageous because it can reduce morale and job satisfaction in the targeted department. Followers or nurses might not be empowered in a proper manner. Failure to have coordinated efforts in the unit can result in poor care delivery. The ANA Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice is a useful resource that can guide departmental leaders to hire the right practitioners (Neuraz et al., 2015). Appropriate staffing practices and empowerment initiatives can emerge and eventually deliver patient-centered care.

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Decentralized staffing occurs when charge nurses determine the number of practitioners required during and after the targeted shift (Eschiti & Hamilton, 2011). The staffing is beneficial because it is capable of minimizing conflicts. Nurses are empowered and guided by their unit leaders. Empowerment, collaboration, and satisfaction are unique attributes associated with the leadership approach. The main disadvantage is that different units in the same institution might deliver dissimilar results. The staffing approach can cause disunity whenever there are disagreements. Ineffective staffing in a specific unit can affect the outcomes of the targeted patients (Neuraz et al., 2015). Similarly, the ANA Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice can guide institutions to identify competent unit leaders who can deliver positive results. The institutions will promote adequate staffing ratios and eventually meet the needs of the clients. Health leaders can consider these standards of practice to identify competent followers to address the needs of more clients.

ANA Guide to the Code of Ethics for Nurses

The presented case shows how staffing is a critical issue in healthcare delivery. Susan was expected to deal with the staff shortage in the trauma unit. The Administrator told her to deal with the situation as the unit’s nurse manager. Susan should have identified the best approach to match the needs of the targeted patients with the current workforce. The approach would have prepared the members of the unit to tackle the needs of the increasing number of patients. The second option was for Susan to inform her followers about the suggested staffing changes. The administrator, the nurse manager, and the workers are all accountable for the incidents recorded in the unit (Eschiti & Hamilton, 2011). With proper staffing and guidance, the healthcare professionals would have managed the situation.

It was in order for the staff nurse to report Susan to the State Board of Nursing. However, the nurse should have consulted the institution’s administration before taking the next action. It was also appropriate for Susan to talk to the licensing organization regarding the issue. However, her decision to talk to the local newspaper was inappropriate. This is the case because the issue created publicity. Fortunately, this kind of publicity can ensure better staffing initiatives are implemented to deal with the problem of staff shortage (Neuraz et al., 2015). Sacking Susan was also in accordance with the existing laws. This is the case because of the negative publicity and failure to collaborate with the nurses. Consequently, her actions led to serious health problems in the unit. Given the same situation as Susan, I would have empowered the staff nurses in the department to promote service delivery. By so doing, the nurses would have been available to meet the needs of the patients without compromising their welfare.


Eschiti, V., & Hamilton, P. (2011). Off-peak nurse staffing. Dimensions of Critical Care Nursing, 30(1), 62-69.

Neuraz, A., Guerrin, C., Payet, C., Polazzi, S., Aubrun, F., Dailler, F.,…Duclos, A. (2015). Patient mortality is associated with staff resources and workload in the ICU: A multicenter observational study. Critical Care Medicine, 43(8). 1587-1594.

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