Reply To: Nurse Navigator and Nurse Practitioner to Patient ratios

  • Barbara Cuccovia

    June 18, 2022 at 6:44 am

    Hi Jennifer,

    These are great questions and I think a growing area where we need to determine what are the right models. With increasing documentation burden, complexity of patient care, and reduction in what fellows and residents are expected to do. At my institution we don’t have an exact model but in our outpatient clinic we attempt to pair 1 NP with 2 attending’s although some have 3. We look at the clinical FTE of the attending and use that to guide who should be paired with 3 as some or our attending’s do not do much clinical time.

    I am still working on the model for staffing metrics for our nurse navigators and currently I am using a mix of Provider clinical FTE compared to nurse navigator FTE and aiming for a goal of 1 nurse navigator to 3-4 providers. In addition I use patient volume encounters with the nurse navigator and phone volume to help justify additional FTEs. I think the challenge is much if not all of their work is non-billable so hard to track yet it is valuable to delivering patient care.

    Thanks for raising the questions.

    Barbara Cuccovia
    Nurse Director 
    Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

    Barbara Cuccovia, MSN,RN,BMTCN
    Nurse Director
    Brighton, MA
    United States
    Original Message:
    Sent: 06-17-2022 10:40 AM
    From: Jennifer Young
    Subject: Nurse Navigator and Nurse Practitioner to Patient ratios

    Good afternoon,
    Does anyone have and use established Nurse Navigator (aka: Nurse Care Coordinator and other various names) to patient ratio model that is used to determine maximum patient load and staffing decisions? Does anyone have a Nurse Practitioner to patient ratio model to determine patient load and staffing decisions?
    If you have a model… how does it vary oncology diagnosis to oncology diagnosis? Is there variance between hematology and oncology? What works about this model and where does it fall short? If willing, please share your model and ratios as well as any other helpful information.
    Thanks in advance for your thoughts and time,

    JenniferYoungSickle Cell & Thalassemia Nurse Practitioner