The Key to Safe Care



by Doris Carroll, RN

(Practicing BSN for 32 years, L&D, high risk antenatal hospital based/home health, 14yrs managing NIH HIV/OB/GYN/PEDS clinical trials, and currently, 8+ years in an ambulatory academic center, charge nurse for 2 practices, Infectious Disease (HIV/OB/GYN, Adult/PEDS) and Primary Care for Adults and Children (chronic illness and disabled children/adults); past Communications Chair for the Illinois Nurses Association Executive Board University of Illinois local unit representing 1200 RNs, now current Grievance Co-Chair for said local, as well as Vice President of the INA at the state level; achieved certification in clinical research and ambulatory nursing and working on a 3rd, HIV/AIDS; a co-author for several articles, posters, and chapter credits. Working full time, single mother, with two adopted children aged 14 now, 5 cats, 2 parakeets, 1 snake and 1 gecko.)


Thousands of nurses will meet to rally for YOU on Florence Nightingale’s birthday Thursday, May 12, 2016 in Washington DC, and state capitols across the country.

Nurses advocate for YOU. We care about you. We need you to know why this is important to you.

Our goal is to unite Nurses with ONE VOICE on ONE DAY. To educate the public about our concerns over unsafe staffing in hospitals and nursing homes.

For the last 10 years research says YOUR health is IMPROVED when health care facilities have enough Nurses to take care of you.

Nurses need YOU to know what happens when hospital administrators cut nursing staff:

-you will have a higher chance of falling

-you will have a higher chance of suffering from a wound, urine, or blood infection

-you will have a higher chance of dying from a heart attack

-you will have a higher chance of dying for each additional patient your nurse must take on at one time

-you will have a higher chance of dying from medical errors either the wrong medication or wrong dose

Doctors know this. They are working to make changes. But most doctors work for hospital administrators.

Hospital administrators know this. Their answer?

-you complete a survey rating your satisfaction of your care. Because the quality of hotel service is more important than than the quality of your health care

-discipline nurses for reporting unsafe staffing with suspensions

-fire nurses for reporting unsafe staffing

-hire less qualified staff to care for you

-hire less nurses since nurses are THE largest labor force in hospitals therefore cost more to their budget

-discipline nurses for reporting unsafe equipment, unsafe policies and for advocating for YOU

-bully and intimidate nurses to keep quiet about unsafe staffing, equipment and policies

-increase nurses risk for mental stress and physical injury due to less nurses because of the risks to YOU!


-come to our rally and hear famous nurses speak out and see for yourself how much nurses CARE about YOU!

-call your legislators and demand that both Republicans and Democrats support and pass the safe staffing bills HR 1602 and S 864

-call hospital and nursing home CEOs and tell them YOU are on to them. That YOU demand they listen to You and their nurses

Do Something! Change Something!

Rally For National Nurse-To-Patient Ratios. May 12. 2016 ‪#‎SMYSOfficial‬‪#‎NursesTakeDC‬

Rally for National Nurse-to-Patient Ratios

Sponsored by:

SMYS for Change, a new, grassroots nurses organization fighting for patients and nurses across the country on many issues.

A Voice for Nurses Now, a nurses organization promoting safe nursing conditions and safe nurse to patient ratios.

National Rally for Nurse to Patient Ratios, a nurses organization improving patient safety by advocating for having a national standard for nurse to patient ratios.

And the Illinois Nurses Association the Nurses Union, representing nurses in Illinois for their right to organize and promote nurse and patient advocacy.


McHugh MD, Kelly LA, Sloane DM, et al. Contradicting fears, California’s nurse-to-patient mandate did not reduce the skill level of the nursing workforce in hospitals. Health Affairs. 2011;30(7):1299-1306.

Aiken LH, Clarke SP, Sloane DM, et al. Hospital nurse staffing and patient mortality, nurse burnout, and job dissatisfaction. JAMA. 2002;288(16):1987-93. [PubMed]

Kane RL, Shamliyan TA, Mueller C, et al. The association of registered nurse staffing levels and patient outcomes: systematic review and meta-analysis. Med Care. 2007 Dec;45(12):1195-204. [PubMed]

Needleman J, Buerhaus P, Mattke S, et al. Nurse-staffing levels and the quality of care in hospitals. N Engl J Med. 2002 May 30;346(22):1715-22. [PubMed]

Aiken LH, Sloane DM, Cimiotti JP, et al. Implications of the California nurse staffing mandate for other states. Health Serv Res. 2010;45(4):904-21. Available at: is external). [PubMed]

Hinno, S., Partanen, P., & Vehviläinen-Julkunen, K. (2011, July 1). Nursing activities, nurse staffing and adverse patient outcomes as perceived by hospital nurses. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 21(21), 1584-1593.

Kalisch, B., Tschannen, D., & Lee, K. (2012, January/March). Missed nursing care, staffing and patient falls. Journal of Nursing Care Quality, 27(1), 6-12.

Needleman, J., Buerhaus, P., Pankratz, V. S., Leibson, C., Stevens, S., & Harris, M. (2011, March 17). Nurse staffing and inpatient hospital mortality. The New England Journal of Medicine, 364, 1037-1045.


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