Nurses, healthcare workers, and patients across Washington state are taking action for patient safety in the 2013 legislative session. We brought three bills to the legislature for Patient Safety Reform to ensure safe staffing, reasonable breaks, and alert, focused care providers. We’ve been meeting with our legislators in Olympia to ask them to support our legislation.
Now we’re taking our action into our hospitals to tell our story, sign petitions, and work to improve staffing both on our units and statewide.
Across the union, nurses are uniting to win on one strong plan for safe staffing:
1. To organize in our units to demand safe, quality care
2. To share our stories with the public and elected officials and urge them to support safe staffing.
We recognize that while we fight for safe staffing in Olympia, we must continue to keep up the fight in our units and on our staffing committees to ensure safe patient care.
Step up for patient safety! Ask your delegate how you can get more involved in your workplace or by going to Olympia.
“We are in a crisis due to chronic under staffing. I often work so hard that I am exhausted when I go home and I try hard not to think about work because it is not a nice place to be right now. Morale is terrible on my unit. I am dedicated to my profession and yet I am unable to give the proper care my patients need because I have too many things to do during my shift.
During a recent shift I missed my first break, had to cut my meal short, and missed my next break. I still did not have enough time to bathe one of my patients. This makes me feel terrible even though I know it is not my fault.
We continually raise the issue in our unit-based staffing committee, but management is not hearing us. In our last meeting we had four staffing variances to discuss and we were told that staffing had been according to the matrix and it was unusually high acuity. But it happens all the time! High acuity is NOT unusual. I know that there is missed patient care.
Our staffing committee needs to gather data and make an argument for the changes that we need to see in our staffing matrix. We need to organize ourselves to put pressure on management. We also need the state to keep patients safe by passing staffing legislation and put safe staffing before profits.”
Shelley Burnett, RN Ortho
juliep February 16th, 2013