1Running head: MANDATED STAFFING RATIOSMandated Staffing Ratios: A Policy AnalysisMeredith ReedSouthern New Hampshire UniversityJanuary 2, 2020
2MANDATED STAFFING RATIOSMandated Staffing Ratios: A Policy AnalysisIt is key for healthcare professionals to understand and play a role in healthcare policy. Nurses must understand the policies within not only their healthcare system, but the policies occurring nationwide. These policies could have negative or positive outcomes for nurses and their patients, so it is essential that nurses play a role in policy development and advocacy. The following paper summarizes a current healthcare policy regarding mandated staffing ratios for registered nurses in all hospitals. The policy will be introduced in detail, as well identify relevantstakeholders. An analysis will also occur demonstrating policy strengths, weaknesses and recommendations to improve upon the current policy. Finally, a testimony will provide direct address to the policy creator and policymaking body. Policy IntroductionA policy specific to nursing that is relatively new, and causing much controversy is a bill being introduced by the Senate. S. 1063 Nurse Staffing Standards for Hospital Patient Safety andQuality Care Act of 2017 is a policy that mandates hospitals to implement and maintain specific staffing ratios between nursing staff and patients. Not only does this policy introduce recommended staffing ratios for hospitals, but also states that nurses have the right to refuse unsafe patient assignments without facing disciplinary action (Brown, 2017). This policy was created and introduced to the senate in 2017, in hopes of improving unsafe nurse to patient ratios many hospitals and facilities employ currently. California is the only state mandating nurse to patient ratios. The main components of this policy include, the mandated staffing ratio, as well asa section to allow nursing staff to refuse unsafe patient assignments without facing disciplinary action from management. The proposed policy also includes a section on how the policy would be implemented, enforced and evaluated. (Brown, 2017). With this policy, there are many
3MANDATED STAFFING RATIOSstakeholders involved. Three of which I can identify are the clinical nurse leader (CNL), clinical nurse manager (CNM), and the registered nurses (RN’s) of the hospital/healthcare setting. All three of these stakeholders are influenced by staffing every day, whether that be staff retention orstaffing to promote patient safety. To get a better understanding of this specific policy and the effect it has, an interview was conducted with a clinical nurse leader at a local hospital. Policy Development As mentioned above, the Nurse Staffing Standards for Hospital Patient Safety and Quality Care Act was developed in 2017. This specific act was introduced into the senate by Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio. Senator Sherrod Brown began to develop this policy along with Jan Schakowsky who is a United States representative, after the interviewed Ohio hospital nurses
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Nursing, Senator Sherrod Brown, Nurse Staffing Standards, Hospital Patient Safety