We sound alarm on SoCal’s hospital staffing crisis:
We’ll told Top CDPH Administrators: Stop turning a blind eye to dangerously unsafe staffing levels!
On Monday, November 6th, we confronted and challenged top decision makers at the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to end their slow, inadequate—often nonexistent—responses to our ADOs. (ADOs are the “Assignment Despite Objection” forms that we submit to CDPH to sound the alarm about Southern California hospitals’ illegal and dangerous lack of staffing.)
Those of us on the front line have seen too many unnecessary injuries and even deaths in hospitals across the Southland that are directly attributable to illegally low staffing of nurses, as well as grossly inadequate staffing of support personnel.
Here’s some background:
We’ve been diligent about blowing the whistle on numerous patient safety violations, sending our ADOs to CDPH. The trouble is, we have not seen the critical corrective measures from CDPH that must happen if we’re ever going to remedy staffing problems. We’ve exhausted our efforts. CDPH Administrators—leaders of the agency tasked with investigating and enforcing the Title 22 laws on minimum staffing ratios—have responded with dismissive comments such as “what do you want the hospital to do?” or “we’d take action if there was a resulting death.”
A few years ago, state legislators reported that from 2004 to 2012, there were 465 out-of-ratio deficiencies reported to CDPH. And although we know probably thousands more go unreported, that’s a significant number.
You know how many of those 465 actually resulted in penalties?
CDPH leadership sends a message to area hospitals when it does not levy penalties and require remedy…the message is this: it’s okay to ignore required staffing baselines. And those of us who continue to stand up to hospitals and refuse illegal assignments that endanger patients are often disciplined by our employers—even suspended—in an attempt to silence us. (See Miriam’s story.)
In fact, this apathetic response from CDPH has led to hospitals now feeling so emboldened that they claim Title 22 regulations are just “recommendations” or “guidelines.”
So we went straight to CDPH.
We spoke out loud and clear. We will not back down on this. We held—and will continue to hold—CDPH administrators accountable for ensuring patient safety.
We won’t wait for another patient death.
——-CHECK OUT THE GIANT COMPLAINT FORM WE UNVEILED TODAY——-