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The Business of Caring: Promoting Optimal Allocation of Nursing Resources

Outcomes-based Staffing Report

Today’s health care leaders understand the linkages among nurse staffing, patient outcomes and high-value health care. The relationship between nursing care and patient outcomes, in particular, is now widely accepted. Nevertheless, it is often difficult to achieve an evidence-based allocation of nursing resources that is understood and accepted by all.

Recognizing the potential value added by optimizing nurse staffing—and the and the downside risks of failing to do so—AONL, ANA and HFMA teamed up to chart a path forward. 

This document explores the evolution from conventional, quasi-adversarial nursing/finance working relationships to the patients-first interprofessional collaboration that is a reality for nursing and finance leaders at some health care organizations and aspirational for others.

The document also sets forth an action plan for improving allocation of nursing resources that includes:

  • Pioneering creative approaches.
  • Conducting broad-based technology assessments.
  • Working toward joint accountability.
  • Agreeing on shared principles. 
  • Promoting interprofessional collaboration.

Collaboration between those who deliver care and those who ensure the financial viability of care delivery is the key to success in developing outcomes-based nurse staffing models and improving the value of care that patients receive.


Attend the AONL 2020 breakout session, "The Business of Caring: Increasing Value Through Outcomes-Based Staffing," Thursday, March 19 in Nashville.

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