Protecting Patient Safety

There is no minimum standard of care in Minnesota

Today in Minnesota there are no standards for the number of patients a nurse can be assigned to take care of at one time.

There are significant health care effects of cutting corners by increasing the number of patients nurses care for at one time:
Nurses become stretched too thin; nurses are assigned to care for too many patients; nurses become overloaded and hurried as they care for patients.

Close calls, mistakes, and real medical errors increase. Patient safety is put at risk. Quality of care suffers. Patients and nurses are put in difficult and, at times, dangerous situations.

The nurses of the Minnesota Nurse Association have asked hospitals, their CEOs and administrators to agree to baseline, minimum staffing standards that protect patient safety since 2005. But hospitals have refused to take action.
Because the hospitals have not acted and some continue to assign nurses more patients than they can safely care for, the Minnesota Nurses Association supports a minimum standard of care in Minnesota, which would:

  • Protect the safety of patients and the quality of care they receive by setting minimum standards for the number of patients a nurse can take care of at one time;
  • Give hospitals the flexibility to exceed the minimum standards set at any time;
  • Empower patients by giving them the right to know and easily see the actual patient to nurse ratio in every hospital in Minnesota; and creates more competition among hospitals and rewards those who are doing the best job of serving patients.

Join us and help protect patient safety in Minnesota by supporting a minimum standard of care.


Patient Story

arlene townsend staffing award

Unsafe staffing costs a Florida facility $1 billion

From Trial Magazine, March 2014 issue: Trial Magazine, 3/11/14 VERDICTS & SETTLEMENTS Arlene Townsend, 63 suffered a stroke and required 24-hour care. She was admitted to Auburndale Oaks Healthcare Center, a nursing home owned by Trans Healthcare, Inc. In the three years leading up to her death, Townsend suffered numerous fall resulting in broken bones and lacerations, infections, significant weight loss, chronic constipation, skin breakdowns, dehydration, and other problems. She is survived by her adult son. Townsend’s estate sued Trans Healthcare, alleging that it had understaffed the nursing home to increase profits and failed to provide adequate care, including protecting Townsend from falls, ensuring a safe environment, and documenting changes to her condition. The court entered a judgment of liability against the defendant, and the…
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