**Appropriate Staffing Update**
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We are pleased to report that a bill to address appropriate staffing has passed both the Senate and Assembly. The bill was strongly supported by ANA-NY and reflects a model that had been advocated for by ANA-NY for years. A108-B sponsored by Assemblymember Gunther and S1168-A sponsored by Senator Rivera, relies on outcomes-based staffing, which is based on research and evidence-based practices, and would require each hospital to establish an on-going committee to create, and have the authority to implement, nurse staffing plans that are specific to each unit of the hospital or long-term care setting. This legislation would also require the public reporting of these staffing plans and tracking of the outcomes of care.
As we have noted for years, outcome-based staffing models allow nurses and the facilities to work in a collaborative way to address the registered nurse staffing issue, ensure that the needs of the patient and registered nurse are met, and that direct-care nurses are empowered to create flexible and dynamic staffing models that recognize the essential role registered nurses play in monitoring patients and managing their clinical care. This will serve to influence quality care and a healthy work environment to encourage retention of registered nurse at the bedside.
The staffing model included in this legislation allows for staffing plans that are appropriate for all care settings or solutions. Patient needs change continually, so quality care requires nurse-driven, flexible staffing plans.
Additionally, this legislation addresses the need of ancillary staffing needs as well. Too often, we have seen the elimination of other care team positions, which then shifts non-core patient care activities to registered nurses. This prevents nurses from practicing at the top of their license causing them to be overextended, and distracted from their core responsibilities of being the first and last line of defense to protect the patient from harm, continuously monitoring patient status, and implementing clinical treatment plans.
ANA-NY is pleased that this legislation has passed both houses and will advocate for the Governor to sign it into law.