Sen. Boxer [D-CA] on national ratios bill.
National Nursing Shortage Reform
Safe Nurse Staffing for Patient Safety and
Florida RNs fight for safe staffing.
Nurses Nationwide Take Up Fight for Safe Staffing Legislation
S. 864 Senator Barbara Boxer, D-CA
H.R. 1602 Representative Jan Schakowsky, D-IL
Sen. Boxer and Rep. Schakowsky have modeled their bills after a highly successful California law that since its implementation nine years ago has saved thousands of patient lives, promoted improved overall quality of care, and helped keep the state’s most experienced nurses at the bedside. The number of healthcare workers in California increased since the state’s nurse safe-staffing law went into effect. Total nursing assistive personnel is up 64%, a rate even higher than the national increase. Only the number of Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs, also called Licensed Vocational Nurses in California) have declined, by 27%, though at a smaller rate than nationally, 29%. Many California LPNs have upgraded their professional skills to become RNs with the encouragement of the law.
Nursing assistive personnel play a role in ensuring that patients get quality hospital care. This legislation takes important steps to ensure patient safety and overall safe staffing. Section 3403 of S. 864 and H.R. 1602, “Minimum Direct Care Licensed Practical Nurse Staffing Requirements,” require safe staffing of LPNs, and the impact of staffing on patient care and staffing levels of nursing assistive personnel must be considered when developing staffing plans, according to section 3401 of this legislation.