Nurses Unions Ramp Up Staffing-Level Campaign

Taken from NJSpotlight, January 26, 2018

Nurse-to-patient staffing ratios should ease the burden on these professionals but some insist it’s not the number, it’s the workload

Rank-and-file nurses have launched an aggressive campaign to boost staffing levels at New Jersey hospitals, confident that – after 15 years of trying to get the controversial requirements codified in law – Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy’s support will help them reach the finish line.

During the gubernatorial campaign, Murphy pledged to sign legislation to create nurse-to-patient staffing ratios for all hospital departments – if it reaches his desk – something many nurses said is important to ensure better care. Proper staffing ratios have been shown to be a critical factor in patient outcomes and nurses have long made improving these levels a top priority.

“You have to make sure the nurse can be there to deal with all the patient’s needs,” said Ann Twomey, president of the Health Professionals and Allied Employees, the state’s largest healthcare union, which is working with other labor groups on the campaign.

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