Effect of staff turnover on staffing: A closer look at registered nurses, licensed vocational nurses, and certified nursing assistants

Bita A. Kash, Nicholas G. Castle, George S. Naufal, Catherine Hawes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

49 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: We examined the effects of facility and market-level characteristics on staffing levels and turnover rates for direct care staff, and we examined the effect of staff turnover on staffing levels. Design and Methods: We analyzed cross-sectional data from 1,014 Texas nursing homes. Data were from the 2002 Texas Nursing Facility Medicaid Cost Report and the Area Resource File for 2003. After examining factors associated with staff turnover, we tested the significance and impact of staff turnover on staffing levels for registered nurses (RNs), licensed vocational nurses (LVNs) and certified nursing assistants (CNAs). Results: All three staff types showed strong dependency on resources, such as reimbursement rates and facility payor mix. The ratio of contracted to employed nursing staff as well as RN turnover increased LVN turnover rates. CNA turnover was reduced by higher administrative expenditures and higher CNA wages. Turnover rates significantly reduced staffing levels for RNs and CNAs. LVN staffing levels were not affected by LVN turnover but were influenced by market factors such as availability of LVNs in the county and women in the labor force. Implications: Staffing levels are not always associated with staff turnover. We conclude that staff turnover is a predictor of RN and CNA staffing levels but that LVN staffing levels are associated with market factors rather than turnover. Therefore, it is important to focus on management initiatives that help reduce CNA and RN turnover and ultimately result in higher nurse staffing levels in nursing homes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)609-619
Number of pages11
JournalGerontologist
Volume46
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2006

Keywords

  • Nurse staffing
  • Nursing homes
  • Staff turnover

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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