Quote from gauge14iv
I dont think ratios are all they are cracked up to be. They can mandate anything - but if they don't enforce it, then what good is it? So they mandate all these ratios. And people file grievances when they arent adhered to. Nothing is done. Just like now.
The most effective ratio would be one set by nurses - nurses who leave jobs where they are expected to carry unsafe loads. Vote with your feet.
Sorry but, you're dead wrong
As a student I've done clinicals in over a dozen hospitals in California and I've also worked in two of them. I always make a point of checking to see whether the facility is following the ratio law when I'm there. And, I always ask the RN's if the ratios are followed.
When I've personally been in these facilities the ratios were always
followed. When I've asked the RN's if this was the case all the time, the overwhelming answer was yes. I was told of only two instances where ratios were broken. In both cases the RN's complained to management that the law was being violated and in both cases the situation was corrected immediately.
Ratios are, in fact, followed the vast majority of the time. Why? Because the unions will pitch a fit, file complaints and the hospital will lose state and federal funding if they don't comply with the ratio law
. The unions have even set up hotlines where RN's can complain about ratio violations and report them.
Remember: Medicare and MediCal requires compliance with all laws and regulations ... and that includes the ratio law. That's why a ratio law
, rather than voluntary ratios that can disappear at any time ... is so effective. When it's the law, it can cost them millions if they don't comply.
But, don't just take my word for it ... I also invite you ask any veteran California RN who's worked here before and after the ratio law was passed what kind of patient loads they had back then versus now ... because I've literally talked to dozens of them.
Virtually all of them will tell you they typically had eight patients, minimum (and often a lot more than that), before the law took effect. The only exceptions I know of was ICU nurses (who, of course, already had mandated ratios) and Kaiser (which was way ahead of other hospitals in implementing ratios).
Other than that, none
of them had patient lower patient loads until the law took effect.
I also invite you to talk to travellers who've worked in both California and other states. It's always the same story, even today. In other states they typically get eight to ten patients minimum. Only in California do they get only five patients. Every traveller I've talked to says the same thing.
Feel free to ask them yourself. There's a reason travellers are now flooding the California market and, travel rates have actually gone down in some cases. Many travellers prefer California over other states because of the ratio law.
In my experience, the only RN's who say the ratio law isn't working are managers who, of course, don't want to staff properly and, people who have never actually worked here and seen it for themselves.