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Meet the
Research Team
Queensland Health

Dr. Linda H. Aiken, RN4CAST Study Director with nurses and midwives at recent Gold Coast Health seminar in QueenslandDr. Linda H. Aiken, RN4CAST Study Director with nurses and midwives at recent Gold Coast Health seminar in Queensland

The RN4CAST Australia study evaluates whether new hospital nurse staffing regulations improve patient outcomes and conditions for nursing practice. 


“Our research will show what impact implementation of nurse-to-patient ratios in Queensland have on nurse and patient outcomes in hospitals.” Dr. Matthew D. McHugh, Study Director

<p>Dr. Matthew D. McHugh,  Commencement Speaker for the 2016 Queensland University of Technology School of Nursing Graduation Ceremony</p>

Dr. Matthew D. McHugh, Commencement Speaker for the 2016 Queensland University of Technology School of Nursing Graduation Ceremony

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Study Director, Matthew D. McHugh, PhD, JD, RN, MPH, CRNP, FAANStudy Director, Matthew D. McHugh, PhD, JD, RN, MPH, CRNP, FAANDr. McHugh draws on his expertise in nursing, law, public health, and health services research to conduct studies demonstrating nursing’s position as a force for quality, equity, and innovation in health services. He has carried out several studies evaluating nurse-to-patient ratio policy implementation in the U.S. published in the prestigious health policy journals Health Affairs and The Milbank Quarterly. His work has advanced the field of nursing outcomes and policy research by showing the value of investing in nursing as a vehicle to achieve a higher functioning health care system.  Dr. McHugh has led many other large research projects using the same data and methods as RN4CAST Australia and has been funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research (AHRQ), and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).

Dr. McHugh is the Rosemarie Greco Term Endowed Associate Professorship in Advocacy; Associate Professor of Nursing; Associate Director, Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research

Study Director, Dr. Linda H. Aiken, PhD, RN, FAAN, FRCNStudy Director, Dr. Linda H. Aiken, PhD, RN, FAAN, FRCNDr. Aiken is among the most respected health services researchers in the world having received virtually all of the research honors in her field. She is a nurse and a sociologist and holds an endowed professorship at the University of Pennsylvania in nursing and sociology. She directs the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research at the University of Pennsylvania. She designed and directed multiple international studies including the highly successful RN4CAST study in the European Union, the results of which were published in The Lancet among other prestigious journals. She also directed an evaluation of California’s nurse staffing policy, published in the interdisciplinary journal Health Services Research.

Dr. Aiken is the Claire M. Fagin Leadership Professor of Nursing; Professor of Sociology; Director, Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research

Study Director, Patsy Yates, RN, FACN, FAANStudy Director, Patsy Yates, RN, FACN, FAANProfessor Patsy Yates is an internationally recognized research leader in nursing having made substantial contributions to health services research and its impact on policy and practice.  In the past 10 years, she has received nearly $10 million in competitive research funding. She has also received over $40 million in contract research funding for federal and state governments and leading non-government organizations.  Her work has had a significant impact on health care delivery in Australia. In addition to the researcher’s extensive work on palliative care outcomes, her clinical trials on fatigue and pain management are also widely cited and incorporated into international clinical guidelines and reviews. She is regularly invited to provide expert advice to professional groups and government bodies on nursing and supportive and palliative care issues and has authored 16 book chapters and 150 refereed publications.

Dr. Yates is the Head of School, Queensland University of Technology; Professor, School of Nursing, Queensland University of Technology and Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation

Dr. Carol Windsor, Associate Professor and Acting Director of Research and has 20 years’ experience in research around nursing work and nursing organisations. 
Dr. Sonya Osborne, is a Senior Research Fellow and has over 30 years post registration nursing experience in clinical practice, management, education, research, and academia across a variety of settings.
Dr. Clint Douglas, Research Fellow, QUT and Visiting Research Fellow, Royal Brisbane & Women’s Hospital and has a strong track record in health services and patient safety research.

Dr. Douglas Sloane, PhD is a Sociologist and an expert on survey methods and longitudinal study design at the University of Pennsylvania.  Dr. Sloane has led the design of many of our studies.
Dr. Herbert Smith, PhD is Professor of Sociology and Director of Penn’s Population Studies Center at the University of Pennsylvania.  . He is an expert on survey research design, measurement, and social statistics. 
Mr. Tim Cheney is the Center’s (CHOPR) Senior Analyst and has been the lead analyst in all of our international work including RN4CAST.


Research Papers Related to the Study

Find out why the RN4CAST-AU study is so important to nurses in Australia. Read the published papers reporting on the related findings in the US and abroad.

Nurse staffing and education and hospital mortality in nine European countries: a retrospective observational study

  • The Lancet 2014
  • Center Authors: Aiken, LH, Sloane, DM, McHugh, MD.
  • Download

Implications of the California nurse staffing mandate for other states.

  • Health Services Research 2010
  • Center Authors: Aiken LH, Sloane DM, Cimiotti JP, Smith, H.
  • Download

Hospital Nurse Staffing and Patient Mortality, Nurse Burnout, and Job Dissatisfaction

  • JAMA 2002
  • Center Authors: Aiken, L. H., Sloane, D. M., & Silber, J.
  • Download

An increase in the number of nurses with baccalaureate degrees is linked to lower rates of postsurgery mortality

  • Health Affairs 2013
  • Kutney-Lee A, Sloane DM, Aiken LH
  • Download

Contradicting fears, California’s nurse-to-patient mandate did not reduce the skill level of the nursing workforce in hospitals

  • Health Affairs 2011
  • Center Authors: McHugh, MD., Sloane, DM, & Aiken, LH
  • Download

Impact of nurse staffing mandates on safety-net hospitals: lessons from California.

  • Milbank Quarterly 2012
  • Center Authors: McHugh MD, Brooks-Carthon JM, Sloane DM, Aiken LH
  • Download

Changes in hospital nurse work environments and nurse job outcomes: An analysis of panel data

  • International Journal of Nursing Studies 2013
  • Kutney-Lee A, Wu ES, Sloane DM, Aiken LH.
  • Download
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