Area nurses are calling it a critical patient care issue. They are concerned that there are not enough nurses for the number of patients being cared for at area hospitals.
The D.C. Council is expected to address the issue by holding public meetings as they consider The Patient Protection Act.
"Across the District, patient safety is regularly threatened because hospital corporations refuse to ensure that there are enough registered nurses working at the bedside," said Bonnie Linen Caroll, a registered nurse.
The legislation would call for a certain ratio when it comes to nurses and the number of patients currently in their unit. Also, the law would protect whistleblowers, and do away with mandatory overtime.
The District of Columbia Hospital Association would like to discuss this issue with area nurses, but does not believe this is an issue that should be addressed through local legislation.