Six registered nurses who attended WSNA Lobby Day on Feb. 2 in Olympia shared stories and statements about about safe staffing in these short videos.
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Nicole Vernon, Virginia Mason Medical Center
"We need protections to ensure that the new nurses that start like me stick with the profession because it can be very rewarding but we're not dumb," says Nicole Vernon, a registered nurse and WSNA member in Seattle. "We're not going to stick with it if it's going be terrible."
Jasmine Hutchinson, Central Washington Hospital
"It doesn't matter how much money is involved in wages, it really is about the quality care you can provide to patients," says Jasmine Hutchinson, a registered nurse and WSNA member at Central Washington Hospital. "Without safe staffing standards, we can't provide that care and it just doesn't feel worth it, so support safe staffing, support nurses."
Danielle O'Toole, Tacoma General Hospital
"Nurses' working conditions are patients' healing conditions," says Danielle O'Toole, a registered nurse and WSNA member at Tacoma General Hospital. "This is why ratios are important and those staff nurses coming in every day deserve to be able to give the care to the patients that they require. Thank you."
Sam Forte, Seattle Children's Hospital
"Nurses are incredible," says Sam Forte, a registered nurse and WSNA member at Seattle Children's Hospital. "The work that my peers do is just phenomenal. It's specialized expertise and in a moment of crisis when you need help you should expect that when you walk into a hospital or a facility, that you get the help that you need."
Colleen Wahto and Jeryl Anderson, registered nurses in Vancouver, Wash.
"Hospitals alone on their own are not hiring enough nurses and retaining enough experienced nurses," says Jeryl Anderson, a registered nurse and WSNA member in Vancouver, Wash. "At this point we need your assistance so that we can provide really good health care for all of Washington."
"The license to care and take care of our patients is what brought us into nursing," says Colleen Wahto, also a registered nurse and WSNA member in the Vancouver area. "We can't take care of our patients safely and it makes the job difficult and we end up losing our nurses."
Elisabeth Shell, MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital (Puyallup)
"Of course we had a pandemic that just happened but really all that did was kind of put a magnifying glass on problems that were already there concerning staffing," says Elisabeth Shell, registered nurse and WSNA member at MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital in Puyallup, Wash. "Right now, every day, you're having nurses go home wondering if they're doing enough for their patients--including myself--and that really hits home because as nurses and as people we have loved ones ourselves that get into the hospital and we worry about whether they're getting adequate care."