WA hospitals, nursing homes agree on nurse staffing

With the state's governor looking on approvingly, the Washington State Hospital Association and a handful of the top nursing groups signed an agreement on patient safety and nurse staffing yesterday. Under the agreement, hospitals in the state will work with nurses to develop a staffing plan which improves quality and staff satisfaction. The groups will also work to develop a central clearinghouse of best practices, including a focus on the role of nurse staffing levels in medical errors. Gov. Christine Gregoire is now hoping to enact legislation which will formalize the agreement between the groups, which was developed with the help of a dispute resolution group based at Washington State University and the University of Washington. This may be the first such agreement in the country--a small wonder, given how sensitive an issue nurse staffing is.

To learn more about this agreement:
- read this Modern Healthcare article
- read this Seattle Post-Intelligencer piece

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