Registered Nurses from the New York State Nurses Association and Patient Advocates Come Together for Three Coordinated Rallies to Say ‘Enough is Enough’ – It’s Time to Pass Safe Staffing Now

Registered Nurses from the New York State Nurses Association and Patient Advocates Come Together for Three Coordinated Rallies to Say ‘Enough is Enough’ – It’s Time to Pass Safe Staffing Now

In the Past Three Years, Tens of Thousands of Complaints Have Been Filed Across the State Because of Staffing Issues

New York, NY — Registered Nurses from the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA) and Patient Advocates partnered today for three coordinated rallies to say enough is enough, and to demand that the State Legislature pass the Safe Staffing for Quality Care Act immediately. Today’s rallies were in Brooklyn, The Bronx and Long Island, and will also happen in other places across the state.

The Safe Staffing for Quality Care Act (S.03330/A.01532) will:

  • Make sure there are enough nurses at the bedside of patients.
  • Set a cap on the number of patients a nurse is responsible for at any given time.
  • Establish safe nurse-to-patient ratios in all of New York Hospitals.
  • Require hospitals to staff nurses in the specific unit for which they are trained
  • Require hospitals to be more transparent.

The current sponsorship numbers are impressive and include legislators from across the state: 102 members in the Assembly and 36 members in the Senate.

The results of studies are clear: patient outcomes are better and hospitals thrive when units are properly staffed by nurses.

Nurses have been complaining about understaffing in hospital units as well as raising quality and safety concerns for years.

Our nurses fill out “Protests of Assignment” (POA) when care issues arise and share the POAs with hospital management without delay.

In 2017, at hospitals where our nurses provide care, tens of thousands of nurses signed POAs and the vast majority of them pertained to understaffing.

From 2015 to 2017, in hospitals serviced by NYSNA nurses, over 69,000 POAs were submitted with signatures from over 280,000 nurses.

More than 80% of those were because of safe staffing issues.

Yet understaffing persists in most hospitals and on most units.

“This bill is so important for patients and their families in hospitals from one end of the state to the other. Ask any nurse, and they will tell stories of having to care for 10, 11, 12 patients at a time – and for some nurses that number is even higher. Nurses don’t have the ability to hold a patient’s hand, comfort a family member, or take a few minute break. It is a proven fact that patients recover faster and hospitals are better off when there is an appropriate number of nurses. As a member of NYSNA, we call on the legislature to act immediately to pass this bill,” said Karine Raymond, RN, New York State Nurses Association.

“The Safe Staffing for Quality Care Act guarantees professional RN staffing levels at  ALL New York hospitals– one standard of quality care for our patients. Not only does it produce better outcomes for patients, but national studies actually prove that safe staffing is financially helpful to hospitals,” said Yasmine Beausejour, RN, New York State Nurses Association.

“The 42,000 registered nurses of the New York State Nurses Association have implored hospitals across the state to fully and professionally staff hospital units with the RNs needed to do the job.   With proper nurse-patient staffing, quality care goes up and, according to peer-reviewed studies, infections, readmissions and death rates go down.   Understaffing is at crisis levels in many hospital units in the state,” said Judith Cutchin, RN, New York State Nurses Association.

We call on the legislature to pass the bill without delay.

It’s the right thing to do for the people of New York.

For more information and to see the current television ad running across the state, go towww.campaignforpatientsafety.org.

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