Safe RN-to-Patient Staffing Ratios
NATIONAL RATIOS LEGISLATION:
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) on Tuesday proposed legislation that would require hospitals to maintain a minimum nurse-to-patient ratio at all times, and allow the government to audit and penalize hospitals that fail to comply with this rule. —TheHill.com, 04/26/13 More »
National Nursing Shortage Reform and Patient Advocacy Act | S. 739 (Boxer)
“I am proud to introduce legislation that will help save the lives of countless patients by improving the quality of care in our nation’s hospitals,” Senator Boxer said. “We must support the nurses who work tirelessly every day to provide the best possible care to their patients.”
The legislation builds on the success of California’s historic law that set minimum nurse-to-patient ratios and extends those minimum standards to hospitals that participate in Medicare and Medicaid.
Specifically, the bill would:
- Establish minimum nurse-to-patient ratios that will save lives, improve the quality of care and help to address the nursing shortage by creating a work environment that encourages nurses to remain in the hospital workforce;
- Provide whistleblower protections to protect the right of nurses to advocate for the safety of patients and report violations of minimum standards of care;
- Invest in nursing mentorship demonstration programs to better prepare nurses for work in a hospital setting.
RNs Rally for the passing of the Patient Protection Act on April 19, 2013 in Washington, DC.
Hundreds of registered nurses will participate in a late afternoon rally today to show support for major DC legislation that would require minimum safe staffing in DC hospitals to protect patients. The Patient Protection Act, a bill to set specific limits on the number of patients RNs can safely care for in every district hospital, along with other patient protections, was introduced in early February by DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and nine other council members. —Heal DC / National Nurses United, 04/19/13 More »
TAKE ACTION: Send a message to the DC Mayor & Council
DC Ratios Fact Sheets:
D.C. Council chair to propose bill boosting nurse staffing at hospitals
The Washington Post, 02/04/13
The Michigan Nurses Association joined Democratic lawmakers Monday in their push to make Michigan the second state to mandate hospital staffing levels, but hospital officials expressed concern the requirement could backfire due to higher costs. —LSJ.com, 03/05/13 More »
I'm a registered nurse who actually knows what patients need when they're in the hospital. So I was outraged by The Detroit News' distorted editorial about a bill to require all Michigan hospitals to meet minimal levels of nurse staffing (March 14, "State shouldn't mandate hospital staffing levels"). More »
MICHIGAN RATIOS CAMPAIGN:
CALIFORNIA RATIOS - IT'S THE LAW!
The California Nurses Association's historic first in the nation Safe Staffing RN Ratios law took 12 years to win and has been in effect since January 2004 despite continued efforts of the hospital industry and Governor Schwarzenegger to have it overturned or otherwise weakened. When Governor Schwarzenegger decided to roll back CNA's staffing ratios and called nurses a "special interest who don't like me because I'm always kicking their butt," CNA ignited a broad grassroots movement that led to the sweeping November 2005 electoral defeat for the Governor's special election initiatives. Two days later, Schwarzenegger dropped his year-long fight against the ratios. Safe RN ratios have improved quality of care and nurse recruitment and retention in California hospitals. Ratios continue to improve with a 1:4 ratio in telemetry and specialty units scheduled to take effect in 2008.
Get Ratio Fact Sheets and Research:
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Report:State-Mandated Nurse Staffing Levels Alleviate Workloads, Leading to Lower Patient Mortality and Higher Nurse Satisfaction
For additional information and resources, please visit the: Board of Registered Nursing
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