What is a Staffing Complaint/​ADO form?
Why should I fill one out?
How do I fill one out? #

See the answers to these questions and more below:


What is a Staffing Complaint/​Assignment Despite Objec­tion (ADO) form?
A Staffing Complaint/​ADO is a form that documents a good faith effort on the part of a nurse to call atten­tion to problems that affect nurse and/​or patient care, safety, or satis­fac­tion. The goal is to fix these problems and ensure they don’t reoccur.


What is the purpose of filling out a Staffing Complaint/​ADO form?
Staffing Complaint/​ADO forms provide documented evidence that a problem exists on a unit and initi­ates a process for improving the situa­tion. Once manage­ment has been presented with an issue, it is incum­bent upon them to address it. Addition­ally, you are documenting the facts, which may be helpful to you if there is a negative outcome.

The submitted Staffing Concern/​ADO also provides the Staffing Committee members with specific details, rather than with anecdotal examples about staffing complaints, and helps them deter­mine if a complaint has been resolved or not. The Staffing Committee has the legal respon­si­bility to deter­mine if staffing complaints are resolved or unresolved. Complaints that show an unresolved trend for 60 days or more could result in an inves­ti­ga­tion by the Depart­ment of Health and possible fines.

When appro­priate, some complaints may be taken to Confer­ence Committee by our WSNA Local Unit officers to try to resolve the concern.


Steps to be taken before filling out a Staffing Complaint/​ADO:

  • Clarify what is being asked of you regarding your assignment
  • Assess your capabil­i­ties, obsta­cles, acuity of patients, and avail­ability of ancil­lary staff
  • Identify all possible options for meeting patient’s needs
  • Decide; commu­ni­cate the decision to your Charge Nurse, or immediate super­visor, and document the decision-making process on the form

When to fill out a Staffing Complaint/​ADO:

  • When you find yourself in a situa­tion that creates concerns about condi­tions for patients, or for you, complete the form as soon as possible.
  • Think of it as an S.O.S. – Short on Safety, Short on Supplies, Short on Staff


Examples of when you should submit a Staffing Complaint/​ADO form:

  • Your unit is not staffed according to its staffing plan.
  • Shift adjust­ments to staffing are inadequate.
  • Charge nurse is unable to perform charge nurse duties, secondary to increased patient care assignment
  • Inade­quate nurse to patient ratios for patient acuity based on your clinical judgment; insuf­fi­cient support staff
  • You are not trained or experi­enced in the area assigned, or have not been oriented to this unit / case load
  • Neces­sary equip­ment is not avail­able (supplies, IVs, medica­tion avail­ability), or you are not trained or experi­enced to use equip­ment in assigned area
  • An assign­ment poses a threat to the health and safety of a patient under your direct care
  • Coerced/​Mandatory overtime, or missed breaks


Questions? Contact WSNA Nurse Repre­sen­ta­tive Sara Strite at sstrite@wsna.org or 206 – 575-7979, ext. 3065.