Campus Location

Dallas Campus (Online)

Date of Award


Document Type

DNP Project



Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Catherine Garner

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Linda Gibson

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Molly Kuhle


Nursing leadership is responsible for considering the equity of patient care assignments when providing nursing care. Nursing leadership is responsible for assuring the delivery of patient care assignments with the intent to offer nurses an unbiased, evenly distributed patient load. Effective distribution of patient care assignments ensures patients receive the safest, most efficient, and highest quality of care. The purpose of this project was to provide nursing leadership with an executive summary of a systematic review of evidence-based research on the structure and process of making patient care assignments, and it provided evidence on how those patient care assignments affect the quality of care provided to patients. The researcher conducted a systematic review of the literature to inform stakeholders about best practices used for acuity- based staffing. The systematic review of the literature involved using the PRISMA model as a structured assessment to screen and eliminate articles during the article search. All data from the systematic review were synthesized to collectively determine each acuity-based tool’s effects on patient care assignments within the acute care settings. The review of articles found that the implementation of acuity-based staffing tools in an acute care setting is associated with outcomes that included self-efficacy or retention, patient and nurse satisfaction, quality of care, and other additional findings. This systematic review of literature provided information to healthcare professionals about literature and the influence of implementing acuity-based staffing tools for patient care assignments in acute care settings. The project also included an implication of analysis for leaders and recommendations for change and future research.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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