HPAE Statement in response to Governor Murphy's FY 2025 Budget Address - Health Professionals & Allied Employees

HPAE Statement in response to Governor Murphy’s FY 2025 Budget Address

Please attribute the following statement to HPAE President Debbie White, RN

HPAE nurses and health care workers are facing a crisis in their workplaces. Governor Murphy’s budget address had glimmers of hope, yet there is also much more to be done to retain our healthcare workers who continue to migrate out of the profession.

Governor Murphy announced budget investment in tuition reimbursement and nursing education to improve the pipeline into the profession. While this does address recruitment, it will not fix the retention problem we see in healthcare, especially in our hospitals. National studies have shown that nearly 18% of newly licensed RNs quit the profession within the first year of working. In a survey of New Jersey nurses, 95% of nurses with 0-5 years experience in hospitals say they are likely to leave due to stress from unsafe staffing. Thus, addressing recruitment in our hospitals, while important, does not ensure retention of those we are recruiting.

New Jersey must pass legislation (S.2700/A.3683) mandating safe staffing ratios in order to comprehensively address the staffing crisis. Understaffing in our hospitals creates an unsafe working environment contributing to nurse burnout and stress. Understaffing is also a patient crisis as studies have consistently shown an increased risk of death and complications and lower patient satisfaction when the nurse is overwhelmed with too many patients.

There is much to be grateful for in the Governor’s budget address including investments in healthcare coverage and helping to reduce medial debt. We also must invest in our current healthcare workforce to truly put an end to the staffing crisis rather than continuing to pour water into a bucket full of holes.

For more information, contact: Michael Allen, (646) 436-7556.