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Clinical Nutrition Staffing Benchmarks for Acute Care Hospitals

Published:April 20, 2015DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jand.2015.03.020
      Due to budget constraints and increasing pressure in hospitals to manage and evaluate staff resources effectively, nutrition managers need standards against which to compare their staffing for registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs). The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics addressed the issue of RDN staffing in the hospital setting in a comprehensive book published in 2004 discussing factors that should be included in a clinical staffing analysis.
      • Biesemeier C.
      Achieving Excellence: Clinical Staffing for Today and Tomorrow.
      At that time, a staffing ratio of one RDN for every 65 to 75 patients (average census) for a medical/surgical acute care floor and a ratio of 1:30 to 1:60 for an intensive care unit was suggested, but not widely adopted, in the hospital industry.
      • Biesemeier C.
      Achieving Excellence: Clinical Staffing for Today and Tomorrow.
      There has not been a universally accepted number of RDNs that are employed based on average daily census or any other metrics.
      • Marcason W.
      What is ADA’s staffing ratio for clinical dietitians?.
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      References

        • Biesemeier C.
        Achieving Excellence: Clinical Staffing for Today and Tomorrow.
        American Dietetic Association, Chicago, IL2004
        • Marcason W.
        What is ADA’s staffing ratio for clinical dietitians?.
        J Am Diet Assoc. 2006; 106: 1916
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      2. Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics. Rationale for future education preparation of nutrition and dietetics practitioners. http://www.eatrightacend.org/ACEND/content.aspx?id=6442485290. Updated February 18, 2015. Accessed March 12, 2015.