State Rep. Haraz N. Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg) introduced “The Workforce and Safe Patient Care Act,” during a press conference Wednesday at the Statehouse. Ghanbari, joined by joint-sponsor Rep. Elgin Rogers Jr. (D-Toledo), and nurses from across Ohio, noted the legislation is vital to address the workforce shortage for nurses and improving the quality care for patients.
“This bipartisan legislation is about supporting safety and our workforce,” Ghanbari said. “The bill will create better conditions for both our nurses and patients throughout Ohio’s hospitals.”
In conversations with nurses in Wood County and beyond, Ghanbari praised their dedication and commitment to their profession and the positive impact they have on the lives of families within the state.
The Workforce and Safe Patient Care Act will establish robust minimum staffing standards in Ohio hospitals, providing much-needed support to the nurse workforce while enhancing patient care.
Additionally, Ohio is taking proactive steps to attract new nursing students to the profession through a $20 million educational Loan-to-Grant program. The program will be for nurses that commit to five years of service within the state. This investment ensures a sustainable nursing workforce capable of maintaining these staffing best practices, benefiting both healthcare professionals and the patients they serve.
Reasonable exceptions to the minimum staffing ratios for hospitals include: state emergencies, patient diversions in emergency rooms, difficulties in obtaining staff (after reasonable efforts), transfers from other hospitals involving critical care patients, unforeseeable clinical care needs, deviations for a limited duration, and innovative care models, among others.
According to the Governor's Office of Workforce Transformation, registered nurses remain among the most in-demand professionals in our state. Additionally, studies have shown that for every additional patient, a nurse takes on, fatality rates increase by 7%.
The bill is set to be formally introduced in the Ohio House Monday.