FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dana Shive, Communications Director
HOUSE BILL 106 ADVANCES TO THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Harrisburg, PA, June 7, 2023 – The Pennsylvania State Nurses Association (PSNA), representing registered and licensed practical nurses in Pennsylvania, is pleased to share that the House Health Committee took a momentous step forward today in ensuring the well-being of nurses and patients in the Commonwealth as it voted in favor of advancing the Patient Safety Act, House Bill 106 to the House floor. This critical legislation, aimed at establishing minimum nurse-to-patient ratios, is now primed for consideration by the full House of Representatives.
The Patient Safety Act, a bipartisan effort championed by Representative Mehaffie, Representative Tomlinson, Representative Kosierowski, and Representative Khan, represents a significant milestone in prioritizing safe working conditions. If enacted, this vital legislation will bolster existing safety protocols, address critical gaps in staffing, and foster a culture of continuous improvement within the healthcare industry.
During previous deliberations, the House Health Committee thoroughly examined the provisions outlined in the Patient Safety Act and recognized its potential to address the statewide nursing workforce crisis. The committee members engaged in thoughtful discussions, considering various perspectives and expert testimonies to shape the bill’s final form.
Notable elements of the Patient Safety Act include:
Standardized Protocols: The Patient Safety Act requires the establishment of safe patient limits under the care of an individual nurse, ensuring consistency and promoting patient safety throughout the industry.
Strengthening Reporting Mechanisms: The legislation establishes a comprehensive framework for healthcare providers to report adverse events, near misses, and unsafe conditions, ensuring a proactive approach to identifying potential risks.
Confidentiality and Non-Punitive Environment: The bill emphasizes the importance of creating an environment that encourages open reporting by safeguarding the confidentiality of those who report staffing or safety concerns. It also prohibits retaliation against individuals who come forward with valuable information.
The positive committee vote reflects the collective determination to advance the well-being of patients and represents a significant step forward in the legislative process. The immense efforts of all stakeholders involved, including the Patient Safety Coalition, nurses, patient advocates, industry representatives, and legislators, have contributed to the development of this significant legislation.
“As the Patient Safety Act advances, PSNA reaffirms its commitment to protecting the welfare of nurses and patients across the state,” said Wayne E. Reich, Jr. MSN, MBA, RN, CEO of PSNA. “Thank you to our members and nurse advocates who have connected with their legislators to push this bill forward. PSNA will continue our efforts to get this bill swiftly passed through the House of Representatives.”
The Pennsylvania State Nurses Association (PSNA) is Pennsylvania’s leading professional nursing organization. PSNA leads, advocates, educates, and connects with registered and licensed practical nurses across the Commonwealth. PSNA is a constituent member of the American Nurses Association. www.psna.org