Minnesota Hospital Association

Policy & Advocacy

Nurse staffing

Hospitals and nurses share the same goal — delivering safe patient care

Nurses, physicians, pharmacists, therapists and staff from all disciplines work together as a team to support a culture of safety. Minnesota’s hospitals value the important and trusted role our nurses play in providing high-quality care. Every day, nurse leaders work with bedside and charge nurses to appropriately staff units based on individual patient needs and on the training, experience and capabilities of the care team.   

View MHA’s nurse staffing fact sheet and issue backgrounder for additional information.   

View FAQs on nurse staffing.   

Nurse staffing plan resources

Legislators, hospitals and the nurses’ union worked hard in 2013 develop a lasting compromise that would provide for greater transparency and reporting of nurse staffing levels in Minnesota hospitals. Under the Nurse Staffing Plan Disclosure Act, staffing plans are shared with key hospital employees and annual nurse staffing plans are publicly posted on MHA’s quality website, www.mnhospitalquality.org. Hospitals are required to report on a quarterly basis how their actual nurse staffing levels and patient census compared to their nurse staffing plans. This information has been posted online since July 1, 2014, and is updated quarterly.   

The following information is available on the website: 

  • Each unit within each hospital and the name of the unit (such as 3 West); the type of unit (for example, medical or ICU). A list of types of units was developed using the descriptions of the Labor Management Institute as a guideline, while also allowing a hospital to write in a name of a unit if it is not on the list. In addition, a “Critical Access Hospital mixed unit” was included. 
  • Today’s health care is delivered by a team to meet the needs of the patient. Though not required by law, MHA has included a list of other members of the patient care team who are available on the unit. 
  • Full time equivalent/hours worked per 24-hour period, split by nurses and other assistive personnel. 
  • Average number of patients per 24-hour period. 
  • Worked hours per patient day (calculated).