Governor Delays Minimum Nurse Ratio

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, November 29, 2004
Earlier this month Governor Schwarzenegger issued emergency regulations that will delay until 2008 the implementation of minimum nurse to patient ratios in medical and surgical hospital units. Legislation passed in 1999 would have required the ratio to drop on January first from one nurse for every six patients to one nurse for every five. At the Capitol, Doctor Joel Geiderman - co-chairman of the emergency department at Los Angeles’ Cedars Sinai Medical Center - said the stress of finding nurses to meet the new ratios is causing E-R’s to close. CUT: Geiderman10 :10 But Vicki Bermudez, with the 59-thousand member California Nurses Association, says patients will suffer if the ratios aren’t implemented. CUT: Bermudez10 :10 Thousands of nurses are expected to demonstrate Wednesday at the Capitol against the governor’s action. Schwarzenegger must make a final decision in March whether to make permanent the order delaying the new nurse-patient ratios. SOC