By Yarnell, President, SEIU Healthcare PA
February 25, 2022
The staffing crisis in healthcare didn’t start with the pandemic.
Nurses have been saying for years that hospital staffing cuts and “just in time” scheduling had pushed us to the edge of a cliff. But while the current staffing crisis was avoidable and is solvable, Rep. Kathy Rapp continues to stand in the way of the most common sense solution.
The Patient Safety Act will save lives and encourage nurses to remain at the bedside by establishing safe staffing standards in every hospital.
Last month, we reached a bipartisan majority of 104 House members co-sponsoring the legislation, but Health Committee Chairwoman Rapp won’t allow her committee to vote on the bill.
Rep. Rapp has refused to acknowledge the staffing crisis or even listen to direct caregivers. At a recent policy hearing, she even went so far as to say that she hadn’t heard “real grievances” from nurses, despite thousands of them having written, called, and emailed her.
To be sure Rep. Rapp hears us, nurses all across Pennsylvania are airing their grievances and demanding action.
Nurses and hospital staff have run full page ads in newspapers across the state demanding action, and have generated nearly 600 calls to her office in February alone.
One person shouldn’t be able to stand in the way of a bipartisan majority and safe staffing for Pennsylvania’s patients and nurses, and nurses won’t stay silent about anyone who does.
We demand that Rep. Kathy Rapp take immediate action on the Patient Safety Act and hold a committee hearing on the bill without delay.