Richard Ekborg- Value-based purchasing has placed a significant focus on the quality of care provided to the consumer in relation to the cost of the care provided. Many hospitals have had to re-evaluate their Fiscal Year (FY) Budgets to better align their general operating costs factoring in an overall reduction in Medicare and Medicaid costs reimbursements for services provided. According to Roussel, Thomas and Harris (2020), “People who pay high prices for health care want accountability of both costs and quality of service.” The ethical implications of these financial decisions can include whether to add extra nursing staff to busy unit floors in order to improve patient safety or accept a “do more with less” mentality and expect the same high standard of care with fewer resources available. A “do more with less” mentality places patient safety at a greater risk over a possible profit margin. According to Talley, Thorgrimson and Robinson (2013), “Today’s health care professional is increasingly impacted in numerous and profound ways by health care reform. Patient safety priorities, quality outcome initiatives, and financial accountability are more imperative than ever.”
Two specific ways to involve nursing staff in financial planning include establishing a unit budget review council to look at supplies and equipment costs as well as employment of the nursing schedule for example having the right number of nurses on the floor at peak times and reducing the number of nurses at off-peak times in order to provide quality care and save on personnel costs. According to Talley, Thorgrimson and Robinson (2013), another example would be to develop a Budget Boot Camp Program, “available for all levels of nursing staff. The program reviews basic budget concepts, components and terminology. It speaks to the relationship of the organization’s strategic plan to budget development, the role of the CNO in communicating nursing resource needs to the highest levels of the organization, and the voice of the staff nurse in communicating resource needs to nursing leadership.” The best input for budget decisions will always come from the caregivers providing care at the patient bedside. They can validate budget planning data and identify possible patient safety and quality of care issues that would be tied to a change in using less expensive resources or changing processes designed to increase efficiency and reduce costs. Please respond to this thread. Please follow the instructions as well.