Nurses Protest Mandatory Overtime
Wed May 7, 5:55 PM ET
As doctors get back to work ending their weeklong walkout, nurses are
rallying in Harrisburg.
Hundreds of nurses showed up to the Capitol Wednesday demanding
Nurses said they're tired of being forced to work overtime and the bottom
line is that? the patient could pay the price. One nurse said it's common to
work 16 hours straight and it's downright dangerous.
News 8 reported 350 nurses from around the state made their demands
known to lawmakers Wednesday.
"It's very scary to me, because ultimately the patients end up suffering. My
job is be a patient advocate. I'm supposed to make them healthy and get
them back into the community and feeling better. If I'm unable to do that, I'm
failing at my job," Kristen Keber said.
They've been asking for an end to mandatory overtime and better staffing at
hospitals for years now, but they haven't had much success.
Many at the rally said the medical malpractice and the nursing crisis go
hand in hand. Nurses said when they're pushed beyond their limits, medical
mistakes are made, lives are lost and malpractice suits are filed. They said
that problem could be cut down by ending mandatory overtime.
"When you're tired working a 15- to 16-hour day giving patients medication,
looking for signs and symptoms of illness, you're not able to do the best job
you can do," Marcie Boyer said.
Right now, there's legislation that would limit mandatory overtime to
Nurses are confident that'll be passed this year. Now, they're working to get
a law on better staffing.