Author Topic: MA Ballot Question 1  (Read 261 times)

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MA Ballot Question 1
« on: October 16, 2018, 12:37:19 PM »

Offline ebrick0340

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Hi guys. Frequent reader, occasional poster. First off, thanks to all who have created this new forum. It's amazing how similar it is to the old board and I'm so glad it was able to be replicated. I would have really missed it if it went away.

Anyway - in addition to some great Celtics talk, I know there are always a lot of spirited political discussions here and I find it entertaining to read everyone's views. That's what led me to post this topic.

I was wondering what those here think of MA ballot question 1, which would impose a government-mandated ratio for the amount of patients a nurse could care for. As someone who is almost always on the more liberal side of things, I find this question to be one example of where I'm firmly in the camp of not giving the government more control.

Having someone close who works in health care, I have been told this mandate, should it pass, could financially cripple an already fragile health care system. I saw an article recently that said this would cost roughly $1 billion annually, forcing many hospitals to reduce services, incur layoffs or even close outright.

If some or all of the is true, how could something like this even make its way onto the ballot, let alone pass? Just curious to get everyone's thoughts.

Re: MA Ballot Question 1
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2018, 12:55:29 PM »

Offline slamtheking

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it'll financially cripple any healthcare institution that utilizes nurses as well as having that cost shuttled onto insurers and thus, members paying premiums to those insurers as well as state taxpayers funding Medicaid.  There's a nursing shortage in Mass as it is which will force nursing pay through the roof as the bigger institutions poach nurses from smaller, lower-paying employers.  This leaves those entities to either recruit nurses from out of state or higher more nursing students fresh out of school with no experience or lower their standards for who they hire for nursing.

there's no one-size-fits-all figure for nurse-to-patient ratios.  Some places could certainly use more.  My in-laws were both in the hospital and in longterm Skilled Nursing homes in the past year.  The hospital had what seemed to be a reasonable number of nurses who I witnessed spending a lot of time at their station shooting the breeze while the SNF had 1-2 nurses covering 12-15 patients (or more) and it was not sufficient. 
Personally speaking, when I've been hospitalized recently post-surgery the hospital had what seemed like more than enough nurses that weren't exactly overworked.  many were six-degrees of useless based on my personal interaction with them. 
I do have 2 aunts that are nurses so I have heard some commentary on this and the core insight is that this is a push for:
-dramatically improving the pay level of nurses
-dramatically improving job security (either with the current employer or a better opportunity elsewhere)
-addressing some provider entities that do try to scrape by with insufficient staffing but this does not seem to be a proliferating issue at this time.


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