In November, Massachusetts voters may be asked to consider whether our state should have government-mandated nurse staffing levels. This proposed law would require every hospital to adopt the same rigid, one-size-fits-all ratios of nurses on duty to patients at all times, in every unit, regardless of a hospital’s size, location or the needs of individual patients.
Sound like a good idea? Not so fast.
This misguided and dangerous proposal would take vital decision-making away from nurses at the bedside, where experience and education save lives and put them in the hands of an unworkable and unfunded government mandate. That’s why the North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce has joined with dozens of other organizations across the state, including the Organization of Nurse Leaders, the American Nurses Association Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Association of Colleges of Nursing in strong opposition to these ratios.
Click HERE to hear directly from nurses themselves about why they oppose rigid staffing ratios.
Massachusetts is home to some of the best hospitals in the country. People come from all over the world to receive high quality care from our healthcare professionals. It makes no sense to override the professional judgment of nurses and doctors charged with managing caregiver teams.
And it’s no secret that Massachusetts families and businesses are already facing soaring healthcare bills. Studies conservatively estimate the cost of implementing the ballot question would be well over $800 million annually, without any valid scientific evidence of improved care as a result of these ratios.
Aside from threatening hospitals’ financial stability, this proposal would drive up costs for patients and businesses, cause emergency room wait times to skyrocket and lead to closures of community hospitals. Even those that can stay open would have to make painful cuts in critical treatment areas and vital community health programs, including resources to battle the opioid crisis.
This proposal is bad for hospitals, bad for our community and bad for families. If you want to help out, please take two minutes and click HERE to send your elected officials a quick email sharing your opposition to this bad idea. Signing on as an individual supporter is easy, too!
For more information on the devastating impacts of rigid ratios, please click here.
Your voice will be crucial in opposing this dangerous, unnecessary ballot question. Thank you for your support.