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March 17, 2004

Relationship Between Patient Mortality and Nurses' Level of Education

JAMA. 2004;291(11):1320-1323. doi:10.1001/jama.291.11.1320-d

To the Editor: Dr Aiken and colleagues1 reported that surgical patients had lower mortality rates and lower rates of death from serious complications (failure-to-rescue rates) if they received care at hospitals with higher proportions of registered nurses (RNs) educated at the baccalaureate level or higher. On behalf of the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO (which represents RNs in Veterans Affairs medical centers throughout the United States), we do not think that the authors' methods support their conclusions.

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