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Nurses to Rally Today for Safe Patient Staffing Bill for DC Hospitals

Heal DC / National Nurses United Press Release, 4/19/13

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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. A hearing is scheduled for May 14 before the Council’s Committee on Health.

Who:                         DC nurses, community and political leaders

What:                        Rally for Passage of the Patient Protection Act

When:                       Today, Friday, April 19, 5:30 p.m.

Where:                      Freedom Plaza across from the John A. Wilson Building at 14th and Pennsylvania Ave. NW*

[In the event of thunderstorms, rally will move indoors to: Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ, 5301 North Capitol St. NE  Washington]                    

National Nurses United, sponsor of the Patient Protection Act, is hosting today’s rally.

The bill is modeled 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.

Introduction of the bill followed reports of an autumn 2012 NNU survey of DC area nurses which found 57 percent of DC nurses say staffing is inadequate always or almost always; 64 percent said they have less time to care for patients; and 87 percent say that mandatory nurse-to-patient ratios, such as those in California, are needed in DC.

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