Safe Staffing Ratios Matter

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SMYS calls for NURSES to UNITE and use our collective power to advocate for our patients, ourselves and our profession. With over 3 Million registered nurses and over 1 million Licensed practical nurses in the U.S, we believe nurses should be able to control our work environments and improve patient outcomes. We appreciate the organizations fighting for safe work environments and patient safety, however, a fragmented effort is not enough. We believe that in order to effectively make the changes we need to make, all nurses and all nursing organizations must come together. We must do MORE!

Nurses have always advocated for others, but rarely have we advocated for ourselves. The #NursesUnite movement has helped empower nurses to take a stand and advocate for themselves and their patients. We believe that patients should always come before profits. Hundreds of thousands of patients are harmed or die from errors caused by unsafe hospital work environments and other factors. In a recent study, medical errors were found to be the third leading cause of death in the United States. Nurses, healthcare providers, and the scientific community understand that unsafe nurse-to-patient ratios contribute to increased morbidity and mortality for patients.

Unsafe staffing creates unhealthy and unsafe environments for nurses to practice and contributes to nurse burnout. As a result, our community is working to change these unsafe practice environments. In 2016 #NursesTakeDC was started by four bedside nurses, and in the spirit of #NursesUnite, has grown into a movement of thousands of nurses across the U.S. unifying for safe staffing ratios. #NursesTakeDC is a bedside nurse-driven grassroots movement to make safe nurse to patient ratios a reality for all nurses in the United States. Nurses gathered at local state houses as well as in Washington, DC for a National Rallies to raise public awareness regarding the importance of safe nurse-to-patient ratios and to support pending legislation and policy to protect nurses and patients.

Why rally? Two decades ago nurses marched in DC for the same issues that we still have today. Little has changed since this march. Conditions for nurses and patients are not getting better. In fact, they are getting worse for bedside nurses. Read about the systemic problems nurses face here When Burnout takes its Toll. We rally to empower nurses, nursing organizations, and the general public, to take a stand and unify to make safe nurse staffing a reality for all nurses in all settings.

As the largest online community of nurses in the world, SMYS has a national reach. When we asked the nurses around the united states what they wanted. They overwhelmingly reported that they want safe work environments, and they want safe patient ratios. History shows that the bedside nurse can not depend on hospitals or executives to make the changes needed to improve patient safety, reduce nurse burnout, and protect nurses from unsafe work environments. Nurses are Increasingly asked to do more with less. This puts patients lives are at risk. This puts our nursing license are at risk. Read More Here. California has mandated Safe Nurse-Patient Ratios, but nurses and patients in other states are still suffering. It is time for #NurseUnite to become a reality, for nurses to stand together and support each other, and for nurses to demanded that hospitals, state and federal legislators and the public hear the voices of the largest and most trusted workforce in the United States- nurses.