5,000 reasons why NSW desperately needs nurse-to-patient ratios
The NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association (NSWNMA) has again called on the Liberal-Nationals Coalition to commit to minimum nurse-to-patient ratios and deliver safe patient care ahead of the March state election.
General Secretary of the NSWNMA, Brett Holmes, said the Liberal-Nationals’ election promise today of extra nurses and midwives fails to deliver a transparent ratios system throughout NSW hospitals.
“5,000 is a big number but without a commitment to mandated, minimum ratios on every shift and every ward, the Government is ignoring the systemic flaws in its current rostering system which jeopardise safe patient care,” Mr Holmes said.
“Experience tell us without minimum, guaranteed nurse-to-patient ratios on every shift and every ward – nothing will change in our public hospitals.
“Nurse-to-patient ratios must be protected in law. Victoria and Queensland already have mandated nurse-to-patient ratios, what are the NSW Liberal-Nationals so afraid of?
“Guaranteed nurse-to-patient ratios would provide a clear and accountable rostering system that patients can rely on and nurses can trust at all times. It’s disappointing, after eight years, the Government has chosen to ignore this.
“It is great to see NSW Labor commit to match and improve on the numbers announced today. The key difference we can see is Labor’s promise to deliver mandated shift-by-shift ratios, which are needed to guarantee these numbers result in real nurses and midwives at the bedside.”
Mr Holmes said both major political parties must deliver safe patient care and the only way to do this was to commit to minimum nurse-to-patient ratios, shift by shift.
“A guaranteed ratios system must exist in both the city and country NSW. A patient’s postcode should not define their level of care,” concluded Mr Holmes.