Safe Staffing and Quality Care Act introduced
From the June 28, 2002 print edition
Pittsburgh Business Times
HARRISBURG -- State legislation intended to improve patient care as well as the working environment for hospital nurses was introduced last week.
The Safe Staffing and Quality Care Act would require licensed facilities to develop and publish a staffing plan that meets minimum nurse-to-patient ratios. The ratios would vary from unit to unit...
...The bill -- introduced by state Sen. Allyson Schwartz (D-Philadelphia) and Rep. Timothy Solobay (D-Canonsburg) -- was drafted with the help of the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals, a 4,000-member statewide organization that has been a major supporter of staffing ratios.
Earlier this year, the group cut its affiliation with the American Nurses Association, which opposes mandatory ratios. PASNAP instead affiliated with a newly formed national nurses' organization, the American Association of Registered Nurses...
PASNAP tried to get staffing limits in it's first contract with Crozer Chester Medical Center and failed; however did get language to have staffing committee with staff nurses reps.
I have problems with mandatory staffing legislation--minimum numbers will become the norm, never over that level at this time. Think it would be better to have legislation focus on establishing staffing guideline committee within each institution made up of mgmt and staff nurses with documentation of decisions why levels chosen. Penelties if levels not maintained. Staff RN's with right to petition for lower levels....what do you think???