Monday, September 20, 2021

Play

The American Rescue Plan could provide essential training to boost jobs in construction, and we explore a trauma-informed approach to preventing marijuana use in teens.

Play

Pfizer says its vaccine is safe for children ages 5 to 11, travel restrictions soon will ease for vaccinated international visitors to the U.S., and a Texas doctor who performed an abortion under new restrictions is sued.

Play

Lawsuits stall debt relief for America's Black farmers; Idaho hospitals using "critical care" protocols; grant money boosts rural towns in Utah and more conservation acreage could protect the iconic sage grouse.

Nurses Hail Passage of Safe Staffing Bills

Play

Thursday, May 6, 2021   

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Nurses say passage of bills to set and enforce adequate nursing staff levels in New York hospitals and nursing homes will save lives.

The bills, Senate Bill 1168A and Senate Bill 6346 passed in both the state Senate and Assembly with bipartisan support. Once signed into law, they will affect every hospital and nursing home in the state, both public and private.

Judy Sheridan-Gonzalez, president of the New York State Nurses Association, said hospitals will ultimately be required to abide by minimum nurse-to-patient ratios set by clinical staffing committees annually, and nursing homes will have to meet standards for daily nursing time for each resident.

"This law is a pathway toward getting the kind of support that patients need in order to get the care that they deserve," Sheridan-Gonzalez stated.

Opponents of the legislation said it will strain the resources of financially struggling long-term care facilities. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has not said if he will sign the bills.

The Nurses Association said understaffing at New York hospitals and nursing homes has been a chronic problem. And Sheridan-Gonzalez noted the pandemic added urgency to finding a solution.

"This is what the trauma was that we faced during COVID, making life-and-death decisions based on scarcity," Sheridan-Gonzalez explained. "We had staffing based on scarcity, we had PPE based on scarcity, and people got sick and died directly related to that."

The law will require the state Department of Health to establish new minimum staffing standards for intensive care units and critical-care units, which must go into hospitals' annual staffing plans.

And Sheridan-Gonzalez pointed out the law requires hospitals to make staffing data publicly available to staff and patients.

"Now the public will be made aware," Sheridan-Gonzalez remarked. "There's transparency and accountability in what hospitals actually have on deck taking care of patients."

The bills also establish an independent commission to study the effectiveness of the new law, and to make recommendations for further legislative action.

Disclosure: New York State Nurses Association contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
This, year the theme of Sea Otter Awareness Week is the species' key role in the mosaic of the ecosystem. (Wikimedia Commons)

Environment

MONTEREY BAY, Calif. - This week, conservation groups are celebrating Sea Otter Awareness Week with online and in-person events across the state…


Environment

LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Admission to any state park in Nevada is free this coming Saturday, as part of the first Nevada Public Lands Week - with a series …

Social Issues

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A new Redistricting Advisory Council announced last week by Gov. Tom Wolf's office will focus on reducing gerrymandering as new …


The Nature Conservancy says the U.S. loses nearly 1 million acres of forest lands each year through development and other factors, reducing nature's ability to capture and store carbon dioxide. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

DULUTH, Minn. - As Minnesota looks to address the impact of climate change on the region, land managers and policymakers are reminded of the role …

Health and Wellness

HELENA, Mont. - It can be hard for people with disabilities to afford the assistive technology they need to perform daily activities. A program in …

"Tulip Harvest" by Jesus Guillen was among the work displayed in a retrospective of the artist's life and work. (Kris Ekstrand)

Social Issues

LA CONNER, Wash. - The exhibit of an artist who depicted the lives of farmworkers in northwest Washington has been recognized for its quality…

Environment

WHIDBEY ISLAND, Wash. - A farming project on a Puget Sound island is looking to reshape agriculture and access to land. The nonprofit Agrarian …

Social Issues

AUSTIN, Texas - A new national survey of community and technical colleges highlights the importance of job-focused education and training. It finds …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021