For Immediate Release: September 1, 2017 Contact: Kathy Fairbanks, 916-443-0872
Here’s what opponents of SB 349 are saying about the dialysis clinic staffing bill:“Strict staffing requirements without flexibility could limit patient access to their regular life-sustaining dialysis treatment and thus is dangerous for patients.” – Renal Physicians Association “Clinics serving a majority of Medi-Cal patients… would be especially hard hit…” – National Medical Association “It is bad policy to reduce access to life-saving dialysis…” – National Hispanic Medical Association “SB 349 puts caregivers in a terrible position between having to choose to treat the patients they care about and being in violation of the law.” – Association of California Nurse Leaders “SB 349 prescribes a one-size-fits-all approach to ever-changing patients’ and nursing staffing needs…” – American Nurses Association, California “This bill is bad for patients and bad for the health care system.” – California Dialysis Council “We oppose SB 349 because the measure… will negatively impact seniors’ and all patients’ access to life-saving dialysis treatment.” – California Seniors Advocates League “SB 349 will significantly increase health care costs…” – California Chamber of Commerce About SB 349: SB 349 would mandate rigid staffing ratios at dialysis clinics and adds a 45-minute “time out” transition time between patient appointments. Doctors, nurses, patients and dialysis clinics warn the bill is:
- Dangerous for Patients – Arbitrary staff ratios would result in fewer available appointments, more missed treatments and a dangerous backlog of needed care. California already faces a shortage of dialysis clinics and appointment times, as well as staff. SB 349 will reduce the availability of treatment slots, increasing hospitalizations and emergency room visits, and will end in less flexibility for working patients as evening and overnight treatments would be jeopardized.
- Costly for California and Medi-Cal – According to California’s former Director of Finance, SB 349 will increase costs to care for Medi-Cal patients on dialysis by as much as $270 million annually.
- Unnecessary – Federal data collected by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) show that California dialysis clinics outperform dialysis clinics nationwide in both clinical quality and patient satisfaction, including outperforming states with some form of mandated staffing ratios.