Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority Ad on Safe Staffing Highlights the Critical Role Nurses Play in Patient Safety and Quality of Care
During the American Nurses Association (ANA) 2008 Biennial House of Delegates meeting in Washington, DC, the week of June 23, 2008, ANA placed an advertisement at the Dupont Circle metro station to bring attention to ANA’s Safe Staffing Campaign. (see below)
Safe Staffing Saves Lives is a national campaign launched by the ANA to help fight for safe staffing legislation. We need your help to make it a reality. The American Nurses Association (ANA) believes staffing ratios need to be required by legislation but the number itself must be set at the unit level with RN input, rather than by the terms of the legislation.
Different approaches to assure sufficient nurse staffing have been proposed.
Nurse staffing plans: with input from practicing nurses, to assure safe nurse levels are based on patient need and other criteria.
Fixed mandated ratios: a number set by legislation or regulation.
Combination of nurse staffing plans and legislated nurse to patient ratio: Enhancing these approaches can include a provision for making staffing information available to the public.
ANA's proposal is not a "one size fits all" approach to staffing. Instead, it tailors nurse staffing to the specific needs of each unit, based on factors including patient acuity, the experience of the nursing staff, the skill mix of the staff, available technology, and the support services available to the nurses. Most importantly, this approach treats nurses as professionals and empowers them at last to have a decision-making role in the care they provide.
Show your political muscle! ANA needs YOU to ask your members of Congress to support the Registered Nurse Safe Staffing Act of 2007 (S.73/H.R. 4138). Tell them to co-sponsor this crucial piece of legislation TODAY!
For more information on ANA’s safe staffing campaign and to send a letter in support of safe staffing legislation to your Member of Congress, please visit www.safestaffingsaveslives.org.