Quote from NurseTimINC
This concerns me because staffing is so multifactorial. Hmmmm, how do they account for all the different situations based on acuity, environment, etc.?
It's about time for more laws like this one, Tim. The law codifies minimum safe staffing standards to protect patients from the harmful consequences of profit-driven administrative restructuring schemes. The direct care RN's independent professional clinical judgement about what constitutes a "safe" assignment should not be over-ruled by employer controlled "staffing committees" that lack transparency and accountability. Hospital administrators are organized to protect their profits. These nurses in Texas are organizing to protect their patients, and their right and duty to advocate for them.
Direct care nurses are educated and make these "multifactorial" assessments everyday. It's called "critical thinking" and it underlies the nursing process. Because no two human beings respond alike to any illness, injury, or treatment regimen, the application of judgement is critical. The bottom line is that the RN who is directly accountable to the patient is responsible for making the determination of patient acuity and their ability to safely carry out the assignment.
For too long hospitals have failed to provide sufficient RN staff to meet patient needs based on valid patient classification determinants. California nurses were the first in the nation to successfully challenge the hospital industry at the bedside and in the legislature. Staffing based on the employer's bottom line and profit margin, with no staffing variability based on patient acuity, has been the defacto M.O. of the hospital industry. Texas RNs are stepping up to the plate, like the RNs did in California, and they're saying: "ENOUGH" by supporting the Texas Patient Protection Act.
Multiple studies demonstrate that patients have suffered preventable complications, even death as a result of profit-aligned staffing as opposed to patient needs-based staffing. Kudos to the Texas RNs who are fighting for minimum safe RN to patient ratios and
staffing by patient acuity to correct those conditions which are against the interests of their patients and their profession.