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Friday, August 10, 2018

COMMONWEALTH’S NURSES BLAST QUESTION ONE IN LATEST TV ADS

COMMONWEALTH’S NURSES BLAST QUESTION ONE IN LATEST TV ADS
Nurses demand to advocate for their patients, assert mandate would decrease quality and accessibility of care

BOSTON, MA – August 10, 2018– The Coalition to Protect Patient Safety today announced the launch of several new television, radio, and social media ads to be aired across Massachusetts in opposition to the nurse staffing ballot question, slated to be Question 1 on the ballot this November. The ads feature local nurses explaining to voters how the measure would apply a government mandated, one-size-fits-all approach to nursing, threatening quality of care, leading to longer wait times and limiting access to care. The TV ads can be viewed here.

“I feel like I’m the patients’ quarterback,” said Ann Marie Thompson, a Massachusetts RN, in an ad. “I know what they need, so don’t take that away from me. If nurses lose that ability at the bedside to advocate for the patient, then it’s the patient that will suffer.”

“Most nurses in Massachusetts do not support this ballot measure,” said Allison Conlon, a Marshfield nurse with over 24 years of experience featured in the radio ad. “If this ballot measure passes, hospitals and our patients will suffer.”

The new ads launched on August 8th alongside an ad similar to one seen throughout May and June featuring Amanda Ford, a Registered Nurse at Lowell General Hospital. The new ads send a clear message that members of the Coalition, including almost every nursing and healthcare organization across the state, are serious about the dangers Question 1 would pose to patients.

“The government does not know what it takes to care for a patient. We’re the ones that do,” said Amanda Ford, a resident of Dracut and a Registered Nurse at Lowell General Hospital featured in the ads. “This ballot measure would be disastrous.”

“We’ve talked with hundreds of nurses on the frontlines of delivering care, who know the devastating results this one-size-fits-all mandate will have on their patients, hospitals, and communities,” said Coalition to Protect Patient Safety spokesperson Dan Cence. “We all agree that responsible staffing is a critical part of nursing, but Question 1 allows for zero flexibility. Nurses know they face endless scenarios each day and that you can’t provide cookie-cutter care.”

The ballot question, proposed by the Massachusetts nurses’ union, which represents less than a quarter of nurses in the Commonwealth, would require that hospitals across the state, no matter their size or specific needs of their patients, adhere to the same rigid nurse staffing ratios within all patient care areas at all times. The petition does not make allowances for rural or small community hospitals, holding them to the same staffing ratios as major Boston teaching hospitals.

Nurses and leading healthcare organizations from across the state have made it clear that the proposed staffing ratios are a bad idea for patients, healthcare professionals and hospitals. The American Nurses Association of Massachusetts, the Organization of Nurse Leaders, the Massachusetts Associations of Colleges of Nursing, the New England Chapter of the Infusion Nurses Society and other healthcare leaders have all joined the Coalition to Protect Patient Safety in protecting the state’s healthcare system and its patients from the consequences of this rigid, costly mandate that is expected to be placed before voters in the November 2018 election.

“There are no scientific studies or reports that demonstrate the effectiveness of government mandated, one-size-fits-all nurse staffing ratio for improving quality of care, patient outcomes or professional nursing practice." said Donna Glynn, President of the American Nurses Association and a Nurse Scientist for the VA Boston Healthcare System. “In fact, no studies evaluating nurse staffing ratios reported a magic number as the single factor to affect patient outcomes or job satisfaction. This ballot question is ignoring scientific fact around what is best for nursing practice, decision making and quality patient care.”

This measure would cost the Massachusetts healthcare system more than $1.3 billion dollars in the first year, and more than $900 million each year thereafter, according to an independent study by MassInsight and BW Research Partners. Hospitals will be forced to cut vital health programs, such as cancer screenings, opioid treatments, mental health services, early childhood intervention, domestic violence programs and pre- or post-natal care.

Learn more about the Coalition to Protect Patient Safety atwww.ProtectPatientSafety.comwww.Facebook.com/ProtectPatientSafety and www.Twitter.com/MAPatientSafety.

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