Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) Emergency Department (ED) has launched nurse-to-patient ratios, after consultation with a working group that included ED nurses.

With this move, PCH has become the public health system’s first site to unveil these ratios.

The ratios of 1 nurse to 3 patients in the PCH ED and 1 nurse to 4 patients in the Emergency Short Stay Unit are currently being deployed.

The decision prioritises patient safety and clinical decision-making, allowing flexibility on a shift-by-shift basis.

During the transition period, the hospital is expected to refine the model and encourage nurses to provide feedback on their workload.

The system is planning a progressive roll-out of nurse-to-patient ratios based on lessons learned from this implementation.

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The health system also recognises ongoing workforce challenges and is making efforts to attract, train, upskill, and support all staff.

They have launched campaigns to attract experienced clinical health professionals and offer support for existing nurses to upskill.

Additionally, specialised training programmes and family-friendly shifts are being introduced to enhance workforce capability and capacity.

GradConnect has been initiated to recruit graduate nurses and midwives and provide them with practical support during their transition to clinical practice in the hospital.Top of Form

The 298-bed Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) in Western Australia caters to children and adolescents up to 15 years of age.

It offers comprehensive medical care, including inpatient, outpatient, and day-stay services.

The launch ofnurse-to-patient ratios fulfils a recommendation from the Inquest into the death of Aishwarya Aswath.

Aswath died of sepsis after being left in a waiting room at Perth Children’s Hospital for 90 minutes, thus offering a spotlight on the strain of the hospital staff.