League of Women Voters Hosting Forum on Safe Patient Limits Ballot Question

DENNIS PORT – As the nation looks to the upcoming November elections to determine the balance of power in the U.S. House and Senate, the mid-term elections also hold significantly important ballot questions important to individual states.

In Massachusetts, one ballot question that seems to have raised the most controversy will have an effect on the entire healthcare industry in the Commonwealth.

The League of Women Voters of the Cape Cod Area (LWVCCA) is hosting a forum this month discussing the highly contested Safe Patient Limits Ballot Initiative, Question 1 on this year’s Massachusetts ballot.

The initiative, if passed, would place limits on the number of patients that a nurse is assigned to at once. Nurse to patient ratios would be established by the state and vary between different departments. A $25,000 fine would also be imposed on hospitals in violation of those ratios.

The forum will feature speakers with opposing views on the topic.

Speaking in favor of the initiative is President of the Massachusetts Nurses Association Donna Kelly-Williams, who is also currently a Registered Nurse practicing at Cambridge Hospital. Kelly-Williams was most recently seen on the Cape with area nurses during a rally outside of Cape Cod Hospital in support of the initiative.

Chief Nursing Officer of Cape Cod Hospital Judith C. Quinn, MSN, RN-BC, will be speaking against the ballot initiative alongside the hospital’s Senior Vice President of Strategy and Government Affairs Theresa M. Ahern, MPA.

The forum is scheduled to take place at the Cape Cod Community Media Center on Saturday, October 20 from 10:00 a.m. until noon.

The League of Women Voters has taken no official stance on the Safe Patients Limit Ballot Question.

By TIM DUNN, CapeCod.com News Center

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