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Ballot Question 1, Legislate nursing patient ratio...

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by boatman, Sep 1, 2018.

  1. boatman

    boatman

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    I think nurses are some of the hardest working people in really tough situations. Have many friends who are nurses.

    Ballot question 1 would legislate how many patients a nurse could have. Not just recommendations, but make it an actual law. Is this effing crazy, or am I missing something? This just seems like an ahole power grab move by the nursing union. If you can explain why we should actually legislate this ratio, I need to understand that.
     
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  2. robjax

    robjax

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    this one is confusing. There are a few nurses in my neighborhood. Some have yes on 1 and some have no on 1 signs in their yards.

    A couple of things I read about this in the past.

    The nurse union that is pushing this makes up for only 25% of the nurse in the state.

    Additionally, there are currently 1,700 nursing vacancies not the state.

    These supposed facts are only what I read.

    So if they are true then why not fill the 1,700 vacancies first and see where it goes.

    Additionally, do we really want the government to be involved in this?

    Anyway, I am still confused on the issue.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2018
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  3. Jttgspring

    Jttgspring

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    I’m confused as well. On one hand it seems that less patients per nurse should mean more attention to each patient (i think that’s good right?). Then the other hand says union/.gov= bad idea they screw up everything they touch.
     
  4. kevin9

    kevin9

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    Voting no on this one on general principle; less government is better government.

    Updated to explain my rationale. Fewer patients per nurse does seem like generally a good thing, but I argue it's not government's job to mandate such things. For one, it limits flexibility and recognition of specific situations that don't fit the mandate. Secondly, It will drive up medical costs yet again. A major reason medical costs are sky-high is excessive government regulation and mandates.

    If there really is a problem, and if government has a role, neither one of which I'm convinced is a given, then I think the answer would be for government to encourage people to get into nursing rather than mandate the supply to demand ratio. Examples would be to ensure nursing degrees at state schools are not priced out of reach, and that licensing requirements are effective, but not onerous, both in cost and requirements.

    Fewer patients per nurse sounds somewhat similar to fewer criminals with guns, both generally good ideas. But in both cases the wrong answer is government control of supply (and demand) <\soapbox>
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2018
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  5. Uzi2

    Uzi2 NES Member

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    Just because its on the ballot that doesn't mean it has to be answered.

    I don't think nurses should be assigned too many patients, its a lose/ lose situation for patient and nurse.
     
  6. rep308

    rep308 NES Member

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    My daughter the nurse told me to vote YES, and I will follow her recommendation
     
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  7. oldgunner

    oldgunner

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    Jesus, do we need laws for everything? We need politicians to butt out of our lives!! They cause more problems than they solve!!
     
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  8. Darksideblues42

    Darksideblues42 NES Life Member NES Member

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    I have several nurse friends who are urging no.

    Mainly because staffing levels, if fixed to a specific number, won't differentiate between 8 patients in there with hangnails and sprained ankles, and 2 patients in with critical injuries.

    The staffing number is the same.
     
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  9. Lowbird

    Lowbird NES Member

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    I thought most here didn't want Gov involved in anything? It's comical to see the commercials every day. Y'all wanted Obamacare, this is the primrose path we weave to single payer.
     
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  10. Picton

    Picton NES Member

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    Yup.
     
  11. mikeyp

    mikeyp NES Member

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    I just posted a poll on my FB page, i have a few friends that are nurses, want to see what they think
     
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  12. snubnose

    snubnose

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    If a Union is pushing the measure it ain't no good-and I for one nearly throw up when I read/hear just how hard the poor nurses work; no body gets better without the lab and support staff, FACT.
     
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  13. drgrant

    drgrant Moderator NES Member

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    union thug ballot question, seiu and all the usual suspects are supporting it, I suspect it will pass unless some other nurse group pushes against it... because communism, because MA fun...

    It'll be a nice shock if it passes and has the reverse effect or some other unintended consequence "sorry, we can't take more patients not enough nurses" etc.
     
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  14. boatman

    boatman

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    That is EXACTLY what the hospitals are saying. Saying there already is a staffing shortage, so if ratios change, and they can't currently fill the positions, how can they meet the new requirements. Having a gov regulation stating that you can't have more than 1,2,3,4,5,6 nurses per patient (see link for text of ballot below) to me is just more gov regulation that was done to pander to special interest groups.

    Massachusetts Question 1, Nurse-Patient Assignment Limits Initiative (2018) - Ballotpedia
     
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  15. MisterHappy

    MisterHappy NES Member

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    MsHappy is an RN, and she thinks that it's a good idea. Her current gig is more mellow than others that she's had, so she'd likely not be directly affected. One place she was the only RN on the Psych floor (couple of aides, or whatever the title was), with 8-10 patients, and in addition to her "regular" stuff would often have to do 2 admissions on a shift Each admission took ~2 hours.

    Unions are not all bad, all the time. It's a balance of power thing. Some places, a union is not needed, as you have "good" management. Others, yeah, you do.

    Kind of like the NRA. A bunch of letters from individual gun owners to the congresscritters has less impact than a single letter from the NRA.
     
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  16. buckfarack

    buckfarack NES Member

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    It’s going to add $800mil - $1Bil in medical costs to Massachusetts. There isn’t a single study that shows there’s a problem w nurse staffing ratios in MA nor that current nurse staffing is adversely affecting care/patient outcomes in the Commonwealth. The MNA endorses it, the MA Chapter of the American Nurses Association (the other MA nurses union) opposes it. The MNA represents about 20% of MA nurses, most other MA nurses oppose it. They know it’ll create a nightmare and be detrimental to patient care. It’ll kill smaller community hospital ERs and lead to some closures which is why most sane nurses oppose it. When there’s an influx/spike in patients to an ER the hospitals will have to choose between operating illegally and paying a $25k fine or making patients wait until they can staff accordingly and operate legally. Marginal community hospitals will close ERs since those will be the biggest exposures for them, and people will have to wait for inpatient care until there are the required nurses in staff. ICUs will be the next most severely affected.

    They keep bringing up the California model. Aside from the fact that no one in their right mind would follow California’s lead in anything, CA ratios are lower than the proposed MA ratios, there are no fines involved for noncompliance, and MA hospitals already score better in patient care than CA hospitals.

    This is nothing but a power grab by the MNA. It was carefully calculated to be presented during an off-year midterm w Republican President and lots of blue wave expectations.
     
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  17. Jason Flare

    Jason Flare NES Member

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    It’s so much easier to pass a law and have the government fix everything rather than figure out how to solve a problem amongst ourselves.
     
  18. robjax

    robjax

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    it seems to be just another step towards socialized medicine. more nurses at union rates equals high medical bills for everyone else. Sooner or later the .gov will control the whole thing. I think it's bad from that perspective. Other nursing groups are against it.

    Also, haven't heard of an epidemic of patients passing away due to nurses having too many patients.

    This may be a necessary step at some point. But if there really are 1,700 nursing vacancies in mass....then I do not see the need for this. Fill the vacancies and see how the patient to staff ratio is affected first.

    Seems to me they are putting the cart before the horse.
     
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  19. snax

    snax NES Member

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    They want to kill as many old people as possible.
    Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid are essentially broke.
    In this state especially there are a ton of
    Old people on medicaid/masshealth.
    Kill them due to legislated substandard care, frees up alot of money and subsidized housing for the dreamers looking for sanctuary.
     
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  20. RDG

    RDG

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    My wife’s a nurse. She thinks it’s a stupid idea and is voting no.
    I’ll follow her lead.
     
  21. Len-2A Training

    Len-2A Training Instructor Instructor NES Life Member NES Member

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    Having just been released from the hospital after a back operation, I took the opportunity ask a few of my nurses about this ballot question. As above, we concluded that the number of patients that a nurse can handle is very different depending on the level of care that the patients need. Alzheimer patients vs. someone with the flu/pneumonia. "One size does not fit all" and that is what this question would do.
     
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  22. BrianWilson

    BrianWilson NES Member

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    My daughter was on the Psych floor one night when one of the crazies got her by the neck. Her aide was having a smoke, or taking a dump or something. Nutjob had pretty much killed her when her guy pal from the floor below stopped up to shoot the shit. She doesn't do Psych anymore.
     
  23. MisterHappy

    MisterHappy NES Member

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    It's not for everyone. She's had some stories, but nothing like that, to her, fortunately.
     
  24. namedpipes

    namedpipes NES Member

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    So what happens if too many nurses call in sick? They just discharge extra patients?

    If there are staffing issues, solve them in some way that has even a shred of common sense.
     
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  25. mac1911

    mac1911 NES Member

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    whats the back door details....someone is getting screwed and someones doing the screwing somewhere and its just not the ratio. What other details are we missing and if we the people cast our vote what other "bill" will this be attached for leverage for something else to pass or not?
     
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  26. dawesrevere

    dawesrevere NES Member

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    Vote NO!!!!
    the govt has no business regulating patient care. My wife and daughter are both nurses- they are very angry at the idea that a knucklehead from beacon hill will prevent good patient acre. Most nurses specialize in a type of patient care. I do not want a nurse from pediatrics who hates the pace of the emergency room and does not know what drugs to use on a code caring for me. If I'm in the ICU I want a nurse who knows how all the machines work. I don't want them to hire a school nurse to hit a patient ratio.
     
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  27. Mass-diver

    Mass-diver NES Member

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    I’m voting yes. I’ve been a nurse for the past 12 years. My bedside experience is in a surgical intensive care unit in Boston. However, for the past 7 years I’ve given anesthesia at a number of different hosptials in MA.

    In my experience it’s the Wild West out there, lots of scary stuff. Nurse managers/administrators are paid to keep budgets down, so, as a result nurses often care for way too many super sick patients than common sense dictates.

    “Failure to rescue” is a common thread in hospital emergencies. Nurses with 7 or 8 patients simply don’t have the time to identify patients starting to do poorly (and notify the medical team).

    As a rule, I’m against more government regulation, however, the hospitals executives are gaming an already heavy regulated system. If we had a free market, people would pay more to have their loved ones go to a hospital with low patient to nurse ratios, it’s a safety issue.
     
  28. buckfarack

    buckfarack NES Member

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    Out of curiosity, did you vote the same way she did/she told you to in the last Presidential election? Do you generally vote the same way? Does she vote the way you tell her to on gun issues?

    My sig other, who I live with, is a teachers union local president, that doesn’t mean I vote the way she tells me to or she votes the way I tell her to.
     
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  29. namedpipes

    namedpipes NES Member

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    Since it isn't a particularly free market, it is fortunate that we live in an area where there's a plethora of hospitals, which aren't all that difficult to find ratings for. Those ratings suggest one hospital may be a safer bet than another one. It IS something you need to research before you need it though.
     
  30. LTCRN

    LTCRN

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    To get a better clarification on what it is actually about, please read this, Our Proposal - Safe Patient Limits SAVE LIVES.
    This is not strictly a union initiative. This is something that nurses have been fighting for close to twenty years now. It has been on the books in California for just about twenty years and has been successful in providing safe patient care throughout the industry.

    A perfect example of why this is needed:

    A relative of mine was recently hospitalized at a local community hospital due to unexplained fainting or seizure activity. He was transferred from the ER to the cardiac unit for further evaluation. There were a total of 14 patients on the floor assigned to just two RN's (7:1 ratio) and all patients were on cardiac monitors. One of the patients heart went into a rapid atrial fibrillation rhythm at a rate of 130 beats per minute when a normal heart beat is roughly 80 per minute. The RN assigned to the patient had to get and administer IV cardiac medication slowly over five minutes while the other RN watched the cardiac monitor for any signs of further abnormality. This took both RN's away from thirteen other patients for a total of 65 minimum combined minutes. If you don't think this is dangerous, then I give up. The current staffing ratio's under question one would call for a maximum of four patients to be assigned to a RN at one time with no reduction in secondary staff (CNA's, secretary's, etc.) on the cardiac, medical / surgical units. This would allow for ample coverage of all the patients on those units if their nurse was occupied for any substantial amount of time. There would be no playing of Russian Roulette with patients lives by management.
    There is also a current law on the books now that covers the ICU / NICU patient to nurse ratios but the language is very weak and this question will strengthen the current law to protect the most critically ill patients. Maternity units and the ED will also have their own improved ratio's.

    If you think this question isn't needed, I don't think any of you have experienced what really goes on in ALL MA hospitals that place profits over patient care, which is ALL of them. The above example was a union represented hospital, the non union hospitals are even worse. Shame on the union members for agreeing to this ratio that has been jeopardizing patient lives each and every day for the life of the contract. If you think the current system that is in place is good enough, just wait until your relative or loved one needs hospitalization. You can sit there and yell and scream for an overworked and exhausted RN to help your sick relative all you want, you can ask for a manager or supervisor to be called, and guess what, nothing is going to change, except the condition of your relative, because poor staffing ratio's are set with no extra manpower available. You will be given a typical customer service B.S. response to your concerns and complaints.

    The current attack ads that are being run against the question now, are paid for by the MA Hospital Association, basically management / owners at a cost of 1.5 million dollars per commercial. They don't want it, they want to be able to continue reap massive amounts of salary, bonuses, and benefits all at the cost of your relatives expense and lives. Hospitals will not close, bonuses and huge salaries will. There are plenty of nurses available to fill the open positions if the law passes. Every year there are thousands of new nurses that graduate from college that are looking for jobs. The current trend is to not hire them. They COST to much to train and the hospitals do not have the extra manpower to train them because they are operating at minimum staffing levels, just like any other business but hospitals deal with lives, not products.

    Finally, here is the first television ad that is about to hit the airways for those that may need some extra clarification on what a YES vote on Question 1 would do.

    View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_WQK-LI8cc&feature=youtu.be
    You and all of your relatives deserve to be treated as safe as possible and not secondary to profits or corporate greed.
     

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