News Release

Patient-Nurse Ratios: Chronic Problem Made Worse by Pandemic


Strikes at two major New York City hospitals, Mount Sinai main hospital and Montefiore Medical Center, ended last week. More than 7,000 nurses had struck, making it the largest nursing strike the city saw in decades. 

ERIN HOGAN; text (646) 322-6616 to set up an interview
    Hogan is a nurse in the emergency department at Mount Sinai Hospital and a union delegate. 

    Meyersohn is a researcher at the Institute for Public Accuracy and a freelance journalist covering health and politics.

In an article for Truthout, Meyersohn described how nurses struck over staffing issues and unmanageable patient-nurse ratios. But this “is not a pandemic problem,” Hogan said of the issues. “This existed years before the pandemic. The pandemic has only made it worse. There’s nothing protecting staffing ratios. We’ve been doubling, tripling up on patient load. Every unit, we would bring it up to management.” 

Meyersohn wrote: “Mount Sinai and Montefiore agreed to staffing ratios similar to the ones included in the tentative agreements forged at the other hospitals. The contracts include clearer enforcement language compared to prior years, including penalties for short staffing. Montefiore, meanwhile, announced it would create at least 170 nursing positions, with a focus on the emergency department… Ideally, the new contracts will also help the hospital retain current nurses and hire new ones.”