Oregon lawmakers have been considering a bill which would establish staffing ratios in long-term care facilities based on patient needs.
Sen. Sara Gelser, D-Corvallis who is Senate Bill 714’s cosponsor, said there’s not a one-size fits all approach, KLCC reported.
“Ultimately, this is about the residents that live in these facilities and their right to have dignified lives, to be safe, to be comfortable,” Gelser said. “For them to do that, they need to be supported by staff and staff are exhausted.”
Gelser said with the pandemic limiting family members’ access to care homes, staffing issues have become more apparent as often family would normally help out with care. She added staff need more training, support and pay.
Many of the staff who tried to unionize at the Rawlin Memory Care facility in Springfield have resigned, KLCC reported. Some are working to help make changes at the state level.
Summer Trosko was a med tech for 14 years, most recently at The Rawlin. She’s working with the Service Employees International Union to lobby for Senate Bills 714 and 703. SB703, also co-sponsored by Gelser, would require the Department of Human Services and the Oregon Health Authority to adopt quality metrics for caregiver registries, home health agencies, in-home care agencies and certain residential care facilities.
“They would change everything if we could get these passed,” Trosko said. “They’ll use an acuity based staffing tool where they’ll go by the acuity of the residents and decide how much staff we need based on their needs.
Information from KLCC.