On Wednesday, hundreds of nurses joined leadership from the Department of Health to discuss the recent Department of Health Orders on PPE and Long Term Care Testing and how our employers statewide can be held accountable to safety standards in facilities.
Members of the Nurse Council shared concerns around enforcement of the new orders we’ve heard from nurses across the state and offered feedback regarding the need for anti-retaliation protections for nurses reporting violations and how to strengthen the current practices of contact tracing across the state.
The conversation which began on the conference call Wednesday will continue next week when our Nurse Advisory Council members will have the opportunity to engage in a small group discussion with Secretary Levine, to dive deeper into policy around employer accountability and streamlining future order from the Department of Health.
We have done so much in so little time, and we have come a long way, from scrambling to figure out what we could do to address the crises nurses had been facing at the beginning of the pandemic.
Reflecting on the past few months, we can’t say these three things enough:
- The Governor’s recent executive order that advances many of the priorities in the Nurse Plan for PA’s Recovery is a big victory that would not have been possible without thousands of nurses and healthcare workers speaking out.
- We continue to need further action and accountability from the Governor’s administration and the legislature. Although, we have made progress that does not mean we should demand less than our patients and profession deserve.
- The contrast between the depth of our conversations with the Department of Health and the absence of conversations with the vast majority of legislators who’ve still failed to meet with nurses to discuss our priorities and recovery plan is incredibly striking.
While we are getting ready for our fourth and fifth meetings with the Department of Health to discuss our Nurse Plan for PA’s Recovery, with four fifths of legislators we’re working on our fourth or fifth attempt to schedule a meeting with them to discuss our plan.
If you think it’s worth another attempt before we stop asking for meetings and start calling them out:
- Click here to sign up to lead a virtual meeting with your legislators to receive our toolkit.
– Nurses of PA