RNs nationwide are actively working with NNU to win their own mandated direct-care RN-to-patient staffing ratios. That’s why nurses applaud the intro of bills in the Senate by Sen. Take Action on this Bill Send a Letter to Congress Urging their Support for this legislation!
These staffing plans, based upon ANA's Principles for Nurse Staffing (member login required), are not mandated ratios.
They are created in coordination with direct care registered nurses (RNs) themselves, and based on each unit’s unique circumstances and changing needs.” Most healthcare providers recognize that safe staffing can impact the safety and quality of patient care.
Studies show that staffing ratios save lives, yet understaffing is a major issue RNs struggle with every day. There is a proven method to save patient lives and save hospital money — mandated minimum nurse-to-patient staffing ratios. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) introduced her The Nurse Staffing Standards for Hospital Patient Safety and Quality Care Act to improve patient quality of care by establishing a requirement for nurse-to-patient ratios that put patient safety first.
The subject of nurse-patient ratios comes up often in nursing circles, and can often be a topic of discussion in state legislatures around the United States.
The American Nurses Association (ANA) has been outspoken on this issue, calling for legislation mandating staffing plans and ratios.
A recent ANA survey of nearly 220,000 RNs reported that 54% of nurses do not have sufficient time with patients, 43% have been working extra hours because of short staffing, and 20% found that inadequate staffing affected admissions, transfers, and discharges.
This approach aides in establishing staffing levels that are flexible and account for changes; including intensity of patient’s needs, the number of admissions, discharges and transfers during a shift, level of experience of nursing staff, layout of the unit, and availability of resources (ancillary staff, technology etc.).” Rather than mandated fixed ratios or a one-size-fits-all approach, this type of model would give hospitals the flexibility to develop staffing plans that fit their particular institutional and patient needs.
Depending on the severity of patient illnesses, experience and training of nursing staff, technology, and nurse support services—all of which can change with little to no notice—mandated ratios can be inadequate.
Registered nurses shall also have the obligation to act in the exclusive interest of their patients, and the right to be patient advocates.
The Nurse Staffing Standards for Hospital Patient Safety and Quality Care Act (H. R.2392)—sponsored by NNU—that set safety limits on the # of patients each RN can care for in hospitals throughout the U. The bills are modeled on California’s nurse-to-patient ratios law, fought for and won by the California Nurses Association/NNU. Send a Letter to Congress Urging their Support for this legislation!
Hospitals primarily used RNs rather than LVNs to meet mandated levels.