Nurses rally at Texas Capitol building

  1. Nurses rally at Texas Capitol building

    They devote their lives to helping patients, now they're asking for the state's help. Tuesday, dozens of nurses from across the state rallied at the State Capitol.

    News for Austin, Texas | kvue.com | Local News
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    Link to video from TV news - keyetv.com - Registered Nurses Rally At State Capitol
    Nov 14, 2006 10:39
    Registered Nurses Rally At State Capitol

    (CBS 42) AUSTIN Hundreds of registered nurses converged on the State Capitol Tuesday morning.

    They introduced the Texas Hospital Patient Protection Act of 2007. It would set minimum nurse-to-patient staffing ratios in hospitals and emergency rooms.

    It would also give nurses the legal right to serve as patient advocates and provide protection for nurses who blow the whistle to expose unsafe conditions.

    ( MMVI, CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.)
    keyetv.com - Registered Nurses Rally At State Capitol
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  2. 86 Comments

  3. by   smk1
    Good for them, I hope they get some feed back, and I hope they won't face any repercussions from the protest.
  4. by   pickledpepperRN
    Nurses rally for patient protection legislation
    ...The Texas Hospital Patient Protection Act of 2007 calls for lower nurse-to-patient ratios, recognition of registered nurses as patient advocates and increased "whistle-blower" protections...

    ..."It's time for bold, audacious action. It's time for revolution," said Beverly Leonard, a critical care nurse from Austin. "[Registered nurses] must always act in the exclusive interest of the patient. No person has the authority or the right to interfere, restrict or encumber in any way the [registered nurse's] duty and right of patient advocacy."..
    Nurses rally for patient protection legislation - Top Stories
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    Photo gallery: Photos of the day, 11.15.06
  5. by   Sheri257
    Interesting quote from the article:

    "Artificial staffing formulas fail the test when it comes to patient care. They aren't working in California and have contributed to the financial problems of medical units and entire hospitals there. That jeopardizes access to care," Sjoberg said. "The problem we face in Texas is a shortage of nurses. This is why the flexibility in Texas' current staffing system is so critical."

    Nurses rally for patient protection legislation - Top Stories

    I'm not sure how they can say that not having ratios actually helps the nursing shortage ...

    Since April 2005, the number of licensed RN's in California has increased by 12 percent as of September of this year .... or 37,000 new licensees in just 17 months.

    Seems like ratios might help the shortage in Texas as well.

    As for California hospital closures, that was happening long before the ratio law took effect ... mostly because of illegal immigrants.

    :typing
    Last edit by Sheri257 on Nov 19, '06
  6. by   smk1
    A couple of years ago a friend of mine graduated from her ADN program and was flown out to Texas (can't remember the town, but I think somewhere on the gulf coast). They put her up in a nice hotel and wined and dined her and offered a nice sign on bonus if she signed on to work there. She declined because she can't take the heat, but also was worried about just how bad the staffing issues were if they were wooing a brand new graduate from another state so intensely. ( I think the hospital wasn't in a large city). Texas is an attractive state for many reasons and if I were to move some where the Dallas/Ft. worth and suburb areas or AUstin, Tx area are the top two spots I would be interested in. I'll need to keep an eye on this as working conditions particularly as a new grad are critical, and I already imagine that the need to be bilingual will take its toll as well.
  7. by   Sheri257
    Quote from SMK1
    A couple of years ago a friend of mine graduated from her ADN program and was flown out to Texas (can't remember the town, but I think somewhere on the gulf coast). They put her up in a nice hotel and wined and dined her and offered a nice sign on bonus if she signed on to work there. She declined because she can't take the heat, but also was worried about just how bad the staffing issues were if they were wooing a brand new graduate from another state so intensely. ( I think the hospital wasn't in a large city). Texas is an attractive state for many reasons and if I were to move some where the Dallas/Ft. worth and suburb areas or AUstin, Tx area are the top two spots I would be interested in. I'll need to keep an eye on this as working conditions particularly as a new grad are critical, and I already imagine that the need to be bilingual will take its toll as well.
    A new grad from our program did move to Texas and, she wrote the instructors to say she was getting 13 patients. One of the instructors told us this story in class since, apparently, this new grad used to complain about getting six patients in California.

    The point they were trying to make is, these are the kinds of patient loads you might be dealing with in other states. A surprizing number of students in the class didn't even know about the ratio law ... they just assumed that lower patient loads were the norm everywhere. Some, who were planning on moving after graduation, are now rethinking their decisions.

    :typing
    Last edit by Sheri257 on Nov 16, '06
  8. by   smk1
    The ration laws are a great help. So far I have been asking the floor nurses about their typical patient load. (pacific NW) and they have said that their units standard of care is 4-5. (med surg, and post op orthopedic floors) This is a good load, and I haven't seen anyone with a higher load than five and the med surg floor mostly had 4. Would definitely be a culture shock to have to accept 2-3 times that load. Of course the areas in Texas that I would be interested in working, are in bigger cities than the one my friend interviewed at, and probably have a lot lower on average ratios. I think I will start a poll over in the Texas nursing forum just to see the average patient load from some of the nurses here...
  9. by   Sheri257
    Quote from SMK1
    I think I will start a poll over in the Texas nursing forum just to see the average patient load from some of the nurses here...

    Great idea. It would really be interesting to see the results.

    :typing
  10. by   RN34TX
    Quote from lizz
    Interesting quote from the article:

    "Artificial staffing formulas fail the test when it comes to patient care. They aren't working in California and have contributed to the financial problems of medical units and entire hospitals there. That jeopardizes access to care," Sjoberg said. "The problem we face in Texas is a shortage of nurses. This is why the flexibility in Texas' current staffing system is so critical."

    Nurses rally for patient protection legislation - Top Stories

    I'm not sure how they can say that not having ratios actually helps the nursing shortage ...

    Since April 2005, which was right after the ratio law took effect, the number of licensed RN's in California has increased by 12 percent as of September of this year .... or 37,000 new licensees in just 17 months.

    Seems like ratios might help the shortage in Texas as well.

    As for California hospital closures, that was happening long before the ratio law took effect ... mostly because of illegal immigrants.

    :typing
    Oh please.
    And just who might be making a statement like that?

    Elizabeth Sjoberg, Texas Hospital Association associate general counsel Of course!

    I always found it funny when terms such as "flexibility" in staffing patterns or my old manager's favorite term "creative staffing" always involved a nurse taking a larger, never smaller, than normal assignment and/or making do with less support staff.
  11. by   Mirth
    There is a nurse patient ratio law coming up for discussion in the house/ senate in Illinois, in Januray.

    I know I am writng my congressman. We'll see if John Sullivan is going to be a senator for nurses or hospitals. It will be interesting to find out.
  12. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Yay for those Texas nurses!

    I'm in TX and heard nothing about it.

    But- there is no shortage in my part of TX. I have a long hx of stating that here. No jobs where I live. Every Texas nurse I know is either a traveler, a pet-sitter or cleans houses. Too many nurses, no jobs.
    The "shortage" is used as an excuse to increase corporate profits by puposefully understaffing.

    I hope these nurses make some headway. I bet they will all be reported to Group1 for participating in something so un-Texan.
  13. by   Sheri257
    Quote from RN34TX
    I always found it funny when terms such as "flexibility" in staffing patterns or my old manager's favorite term "creative staffing" always involved a nurse taking a larger, never smaller, than normal assignment and/or making do with less support staff.
    It's also funny to read that the ratio law is supposedly causing more hospital closures in California.

    In my area the union hospital ... which just implemented a new union negotiated raise that's substantially increased RN pay in the area ... has just announced plans for a new hospital. And a cardiologist is now trying to get yet another hospital approved.

    Even with unions, RN pay raises and ratios ... it doesn't seem to discouraging hospital administrators from wanting to build more hospitals in my neck of the woods. We already have three hospitals in the area yet, they're trying to get approval to build two more.

    :typing
    Last edit by Sheri257 on Nov 18, '06
  14. by   PMHNP10
    Quote from Hellllllo Nurse
    I bet they will all be reported to Group1 for participating in something so un-Texan.
    It was my understanding that Group 1 is in DFW only. Have they moved to Austin?
    Last edit by PMHNP10 on Nov 18, '06

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