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  • NJ A5056
  • Establishes minimum direct care registered professional nurse staffing ratios for hospitals and ambulatory surgical facilities.
Introduced
(6/26/2017)
In Committee
(6/26/2017)
Crossed OverPassedSignedDead/Failed/Vetoed
2016-2017 Regular Session
This bill provides that the Commissioner of Health adopt regulations that require general and special hospitals and ambulatory surgical facilities to implement minimum direct care registered professional nurse-to-patient staffing ratios. "Direct care registered professional nurse" is defined by the bill as a registered professional nurse who provides bedside care for one or more patients. The regulations are to require that one direct care registered professional nurse shall not be assigned to more than the following number of patients: (1) one patient in trauma emergency units; (2) one patient in operating room units, provided that at least one additional person serves as a scrub assistant in such unit; (3)two patients in critical care units, including neonatal intensive care units, emergency critical care and intensive care units, labor and delivery units, coronary care units, acute respiratory care units, post anesthesia units, and burn units; (4) three patients in emergency room units, pediatrics units, stepdown units, telemetry units, antepartum units, and combined labor, delivery, and postpartum units; (5) four patients in medical-surgical units, intermediate care nursery units, acute care psychiatric units, and other specialty care units; (6) five patients in rehabilitation units and skilled nursing units; and (7) six patients in postpartum units and well-baby nursery units. The bill provides that the Department of Health monitor and enforce the minimum direct care registered professional nurse-to-patient staffing ratios required by this act through periodic inspections and audits of the staffing plans to be submitted to the Commissioner. The bill requires that all general and special hospitals and ambulatory surgical facilities develop, no later than 12 months following enactment of this bill, a staffing plan, to be approved by the Commissioner, and implemented no later than 24 months following enactment of the bill, to provide for registered professional nurse-to-patient ratios above the minimum ratios required by the bill, if appropriate, based upon consideration of, but not limited to, factors, such as: the number of patients on a particular unit on a shift-by-shift basis; the acuity level and nursing care plan of patients on a particular unit on a shift-by-shift basis; the anticipated admissions, discharges, and transfers of patients during each shift that impacts direct patient care; specialized experience required of direct care registered professional nurses on a particular unit; staffing levels and services provided by licensed practical or vocational nurses or other ancillary staff in meeting direct patient care needs not required to be performed by a direct care registered professional nurse; and obstacles to efficiency in the delivery of patient care presented by physical layout. The bill requires that hospitals and ambulatory surgical facilities annually reevaluate their staffing plan in light of actual patient care requirements, and update the plan as appropriate. The staffing plan is to be developed and annually reevaluated on the basis of input from direct care registered professional nurses at the hospital or ambulatory surgical facility from each unit or area, and if applicable, with the input of the collective bargaining representative of the direct care registered professional nurses at the hospital or ambulatory surgical facility.
Health and Senior Services
Introduced, Referred to Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee  (on 6/26/2017)
 
 

Date Chamber Action Description
6/26/2017 A Introduced, Referred to Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee
Date Motion Yea Nay Other
None specified