Stable Nurse Staffing Improves Quality (Healthcare Finance News)
A recent study funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Interdisciplinary Nursing Quality Research Initiative (INQRI) suggests that rural hospitals may be able to ensure more high-quality care to their patients if they are able to maintain a lower nurse turnover rate and better practice environments.
Labor’s Plan B (The American Prospect)
Collective bargaining may just be a thing of the past, so what are unions hoping will take its place?
Readmission Penalties Could Hinder Hospitals in Some Areas (California Healthline)
Some healthcare experts in California and across the nation are concerned that smaller hospitals serving low-income communities might be the most affected by federal penalties designed to curb readmission rates for Medicare beneficiaries, KPCC’s “KPCC News” reports.
Hand-washing key to preventing infections in hospitals and clinics (UN News Centre)
Hundreds of millions of infections could be prevented if healthcare professionals, patients and their families, wash their hands with alcohol-based rub or soap and water before and after touching patients and their surroundings, the United Nations health agency today said marking Hand Hygiene Day.
Deadly CRE Infection Spreading Fast in Hospitals (HealthLeaders Media)
The term “CRE” was barely a blip on most hospitals’ radar before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlighted the emerging infection, carbapenem-resistant enterobacteriaceae, in its “Vital Signs” report in March.
Nurses Uniquely Suited To Be Care Coordinators (HealthLeaders Media)
A lot of the care coordination job is about understanding a continuum of care that a patient will go through,” she says, and nurses certainly do. But even beyond the clinical understanding and expertise that’s required of the job, care coordinators who come from nursing backgrounds can draw on and transfer other skills that they used when they were bedside nurses.
At Least Seven States Considering Nurse-to-Patient Ratios (The Advisory Board)
Nurses in seven states are pushing for legislation that would require hospitals to comply with nurse-to-patient staffing ratios.
Nurses Fighting State By State For Minimum Staffing Laws (Kaiser Health News)
How many nurses does it take to run a hospital? Legislatures in at least seven states and the District of Columbia are trying to answer that question as they debate bills that would require hospitals to have a minimum number of nurses on staff at all times.
Magnet Hospitals have Lower Death Rates (Healthcare Finance News)
Better outcomes at magnet hospitals could be due to nursing investments.
Nurse Understaffing Impacts Quality of Care, Leads to Increased Infections (Healthcare Finance News)
Two recent studies on nurse understaffing and nurse fatigue have revealed that these two prominent issues negatively impact the quality of care delivery, patient and employee satisfaction and operational costs in hospitals.
Calif. Health Care Providers Brace for Surge in Patient Population (California Healthline)
Health care leaders in various California regions are preparing for a surge in new patients when the Affordable Care Act expands health insurance coverage in 2014. Under the ACA, California will expand access to Medi-Cal — the state’s Medicaid program — and establish an online health insurance exchange. The exchange — named Covered California — primarily will serve individuals and small businesses.
Tracking ACA Implementation in California (CHCF)
This guide tracks the California implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), whose provisions touch on most aspects of the health care system, including cost, quality, and access. It describes the law’s requirements for public and private coverage and breaks each into implementation objectives — some complete, others underway, and some not yet begun. The law requires, with few exceptions, that people obtain health insurance, and it provides new structures and supports to help them do so. Today about 1 in 5 nonelderly Californians is uninsured. This ratio is expected to fall to 1 in 10 by 2016 because of the ACA. Those who obtain health insurance should gain not only financial security, but also improved access to care, and through it, better health outcomes.
Labor Defeats Anti-Union Initiative in California (MercuryNews.com)
California voters reaffirmed their support for unions in defeating a provision that would have banned the way labor traditionally raises money to fund political activity. The defeat of Proposition 32 became clear early Wednesday. With 75 percent of precincts reporting, Californians voted 55 percent against the measure, compared to 45 percent in support.
Report Finds California Among States With Best Hospitals (California Healthline)
California is among the states that scored highest for hospital care related to conditions and treatments commonly linked to mortality, according to a report released by Healthgrades, USA Today reports.
United States: Unions Promote State Workplace Anti-Bullying Bills (Mondaq)
To commemorate Freedom From Workplace Bullies Week, presidents of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and National Association of Government Employees (NAGE) spoke in favor of legislation targeting workplace bullying. During the press conference sponsored by the Workplace Bullying Institute (WBI), WBI Director Gary Namie called for unions to support the Healthy Workplace Bill (HWB), a measure that has been introduced in 21 states since 2003, according to the organization.
Soap, Swabs Slash Infection Rates by 44% (HealthLeaders Media)
A study conducted at 43 HCA-affiliated community hospitals saw bloodstream infections, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), drop by 44% when all ICU patients were subjected to daily “universal decolonization” using antimicrobial soap and nasal swabs.
More Nurses for Hospital Patients: Impact on Quality Questionable (Health Services Research)
Passage of a bill in 1999 requiring minimum nurse-to-patient ratios in California hospitals increased the number of nurses but resulted in mixed quality of care, according to a new study.
Patient Safety Project Reduces Infections by 40 Percent, Saves $34M (Healthcare Finance News)
According to Pronovost, the CUSP toolkit helps doctors, nurses and other members of the clinical team understand how to identify safety problems and gives them the tools to tackle problems that threaten the safety of their patients.
Unit-based Patient Safety Cuts Blood Infections by 40% (FierceHealthcare)
In what it calls the largest national effort to stop central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI), the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) cut infections by 40 percent in intensive care units in a four-year project that could become the national model for patient safety.
Workforce Analysts Look at the Nursing Profession (nurse.com)
New grads struggling to find jobs. A push to move healthcare from the hospital setting to the community. Networks of providers managing patient care.
For many nurses, today’s workforce situation seems all too familiar.
Overworked and Exhausted: How to Alleviate Nursing Resources Through Employee Engagement and Recognition (Becker’s Hospital Review)
The registered nursing workforce is the top occupation in terms of job growth through 2020, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nurses. By then the number of employed nurses needed will grow to 3.45 million, a 26 percent increase within the decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is great news for job opportunities, but with an already large shortage of resources and increased demand, will many nurses “check-out” of the hospital if all of these slots aren’t progressively filled?
Presently, it comes as no surprise and is no secret that nurses are overworked, heightening concern for systems that are moving towards pay for performance and results-driven reimbursement. Patient satisfaction, reportable quality indicators and reducing readmissions are top priorities for hospital and healthcare organizations. These priorities, coupled with more acutely ill patients, make the task of delivering quality care harder for nurses to achieve — let alone achieve upon exhaustion.
Panel to Distribute Safe Patient Handling Standards (nurse.com)
The American Nurses Association has announced a broad-based effort to develop national standards to guide hospitals and other healthcare facilities in their implementation of policies and equipment to safely lift and move patients.
Many experts agree such a culture change is necessary to reduce injuries to healthcare workers and patients, the ANA noted.
Flu Shot for Nurses Should be Voluntary, Head of B.C.’s Union States (Globe and Mail)
As president of the British Columbia Nurses’ Union, Debra McPherson is the public face of a labour group that represents about 32,000 nurses and health-care workers across the province.
Currently, she is part of a team that is negotiating with the Health Employers Association of B.C. for a contract to replace one that expired March 31, 2012. She’s also spoken out about a recent announcement that health-care workers who come into contact with patients during flu season will be required to get a flu shot or wear a mask.
Better Environments for Nurses Mean Fewer Medication Errors (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation)
Interdisciplinary study affirms vital role of nurses in ensuring patient safety; focuses on work environment factors that improve health and fiscal outcomes.
Abuse in the Workplace: How to Recognize It and What to Do about It
Bullying has always been a problem in the workplace, and Local 1000 has been taking steps to help members understand what it is and how to address it.
Massachusetts bars mandatory overtime for nurses (CCH® PAYROLL)
Massachusetts law includes a provision barring mandatory overtime for nurses. The provision is part of a larger measure that is intended to improve the quality of health care and reduce costs through increased transparency, efficiency and innovation.
The law prohibits hospitals from requiring mandatory overtime except in the case of an emergency situation where the safety of the patient requires its use and when there is no reasonable alternative. A nurse can not be allowed to work more than 16 consecutive hours worked in a 24 hour period. In the event a nurse works 16 consecutive hours, that nurse must be given at least eight consecutive hours of off-duty time immediately after the worked overtime. The law would not impact collective bargaining agreements.
Nurses: Collective Bargaining Saves Lives (Targeted News Service)
“Staffing is always the first issue that nurses bring up in negotiations, because without adequate staffing, we cannot provide the safe, appropriate care that every patient needs,” said Tammy Parsons, a registered nurse at Sparrow Hospital. “The ratios we negotiated with Sparrow are an example of how collective bargaining benefits everyone. Nurses have more time to provide the skilled care that patients need, and the hospital is receiving more opportunities and recognition for improved patient care.”
For example, each additional patient that a nurse has to take care of increases the patient’s likelihood of dying within 30 days of admission by 7 percent, according to a 2002 Journal of the American Medical Association report.
Family Can Help Patients Get Well
If you’ve ever experienced the hospitalization of a family member, you know it can be an overwhelming experience. You’re worried and anxious about his or her illness or injury. But, the most important thing you can do is be an active advocate for your loved one.
Dr. Steven G. Gabbe is senior vice president for health sciences at Ohio State University and chief executive officer at Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center.
Report Looks at Primary Care Models that Redefine Nursing Roles (AHA News Now)
A new report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation looks at innovative models that redefine nursing roles to address primary care challenges. Implemented in Nebraska, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Vermont, the District of Columbia and Veterans Administration, the models emphasize care coordination, interprofessional teams and information technology. Some of the models include payment reforms or remove barriers to allow nurses to practice to the full extent of their training. The report is part of an RWJF series on implementing the 2010 Institute of Medicine report on “The Future of Nursing.”
Report: Health Sector Job Growth ‘Bright Spot’ in Economy (AHA News Now)
Private-sector health care employment grew by 33,000 jobs in May to a record 10.8% share of total employment, according to report released Friday by the Altarum Institute Center for Sustainable Health Spending. Over the past 12 months, health care employment grew by 2.4%, twice the rate of non-health employment, with hospitals adding the largest number of jobs (92,900), the report adds. “Since the start of the recession in December 2007, the health sector has added 1.2 million jobs for a cumulative growth of 9.5%, while non-health employment has fallen by 6.2 million jobs for a cumulative decline of 5.0%,” the report states.
Why Obamacare Is Important for Women’s Health (SEIU Blog)
This week is Women’s Health Week and thanks to the Affordable Care Act, women will be leading longer, healthier lives because they now have access to critical services like maternity care and preventive checkups. Women’s health is critical to our economy, family and community because they are mothers, senators, sisters, CEOs, aunts, nurses, wives and friends.
Tougher Penalties Proposed for Assaults on Nurses & Other Staff (Omaha World-Herald)
About 1300 assaults of nurses, nurse aides, clerical staff and other health professionals occur every day nationally, according to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. That and similar stories helped push passage in the Nebraska.
A Civil Right to Unionize (New York Times)
From the 1940s to the 1970s, organized labor helped build a middle-class democracy in the United States.