Laws, rules and administration of hospital nurse staffing in Oregon
On this page:
View reports from nurse staffing surveys and complaint investigations
Nurse Staffing Resources
OHA has create a variety of resources to provide information and answer questions about new nurse staffing laws and rules. As part of this outreach hosted three Open House Webinar events and each session has been archived here for later viewing. OHA has also put together an FAQ and specific guidance regarding the Plans of Correction that hospitals must submit after receiving a survey or complaint investigation report.
New Administrative Rules
2015 Statutory changes necessitated changes to the nurse staffing administrative rules. OHA amended the rules and the new rules went into effect on July 1, 2016 and January 23, 2017.
Oregon Administrative Rules Chapter 333, Division 501 includes:
Oregon Administrative Rules Chapter 333, Division 510 includes:
- Nurse Staffing Posting and Record Requirements
- Nurse Staffing Committee Requirement
- Nurse Staffing Plan Requirements
- Nurse Staffing Plan Review Requirement
- Nurse Staffing Plan Mediation
- Replacement Nurse Staffing Requirements
- Nurse Staffing Member Overtime
- Nurse Staffing Plan Waiver
- Nurse Staffing Plan During an Emergency
Senate Bill 469
In 2015 the Oregon Legislature worked with a coalition of direct care nurses and hospitals to improve Oregon's nurse staffing laws and passed Senate Bill 469 (SB 469), which incorporate these changes.
The significant features of SB 469 are:
- Establishes composition and activities of Hospital Nurse Staffing Committees (HNSC);
- Provides factors for HNSCs to consider when formulating nurse staffing plans;
- Requires mediation when HNSC cannot agree on nurse staffing plan;
- Clarifies hospital record-keeping requirements;
- Creates statewide Nurse Staffing Advisory Board (NSAB);
- Implements timelines for OHA nurse staffing complaint investigations;
- Increases frequency of OHA nurse staffing audits; and
- Clarifies OHA posting requirements for public records.
Additional information about SB 469 and OHA's implementation activities (pdf)
HCRQI and HFLC
Health Care Regulation and Quality Improvement (HCRQI)
HCRQI oversees the implementation of nurse staffing laws in Oregon.
Health Facility Licensing and Certificaiton (HFLC)
HFLC licenses hospitals in Oregon. HFLC staff support the Nurse Staffing Advisory Board (NSAB) and HFLC's Surveyor and Certification is responsible for nurse staffing surveys and complaint investigations pursuant to Oregon statutes and administrative rules. HFLC staff work together to provide guidance to hospitals and nursing staff members throughout Oregon. HFLC also maintains a list of hospital nurse staffing committee co-chairs in order to providence notice in advance of nurse staffing audits. Hospitals should submit a change form (pdf) if the hospital nurse staffing committee co-chairs change.
Join our Listserv
The OHA Hospital Nurse Staffing Listserv is used to send announcements and information regarding hospital nurse staffing rules and related events put on by the Health Facility Licensing and Certification Program.
To be added to the Listserv: Please e-mail your request to firstname.lastname@example.org, with "Add to Hospital Nurse Staffing Listserv" in the subject field.
HFLC may waive one or more of the staffing plan requirements in OAR 333-510-0110 if the waiver is necessary to ensure that the hospital is staffed to meet the health care needs of its patients.
Waiver requests must
- Be submitted in writing;
- State the reason the hospital is seeking the waiver;
- Explain how the waiver is necessary for the hospital to meet patient health care needs; and
- Include verification that the hospital nurse staffing committee has been notified of the request for waiver.
Hospitals can use the Nurse Staffing Waiver Request Form (pdf) to prepare the written request.
The Nurse Staffing Advisory Board (NSAB) is a 12-member board of hospital nurse managers, direct care registered nurses, and a direct care staff member.
NSAB Members (pdf) are charged with
- Providing advice to the Oregon Health Authority on the administration of Oregon's nurse staffing laws;
- Identifying trends, opportunities and concerns related to nurse staffing;
- Making recommendations to the Oregon Health Authority on the basis of those trends, opportunities and concerns;
- Reviewing the enforcement powers and processes under Oregon's nurse staffing laws.
The NSAB submits an annual report to the legislature on the administration of Oregon's nurse staffing laws.
September 2016 Legislative Report (pdf)
NSAB Meeting Schedule
For more information about NSAB meetings go to the Oregon transparency website.
Nurse Staffing Survey Process
Beginning in 2017
HFLC staff will use a standardized survey process intended to evaluate hospital compliance with the rules related to nurse staffing. Hospitals will be randomly selected for survey from the list of hospitals licensed in the state of Oregon.
- Each hospital will be audited once every three years to assess nurse staffing compliance;
- Audits will include review of relevant records, interviews of both Hospital Nurse Staffing Committee (HNSC) co-chairs, and interviews of any other person(s) deemed necessary to determine compliance;
- Hospitals will keep and maintain records that demonstrate compliance;
- After an audit, OHA will send the hospital and the HNSC co-chairs a written report that explains any nurse staffing concerns found during the survey. A hospital will submit a plan of correction to address any concerns noted in the OHA's report. Once a plan of correction is approved, OHA will revisit the hospital within 60 days to determine compliance; and
- OHA will maintain and post audit reports online (see below).
Nurse Staffing Complaint Process
Beginning in 2017
HFLC staff will use tools developed in the audit process to investigate specific nurse staffing complaints.
- OHA will conduct an onsite investigation within 60 days of receiving a nurse staffing complaint;
- Investigations will include review of relevant records and interviews of any person(s) deemed necessary to determine compliance;
- After an investigation, OHA will send the hospital and the HNSC co-chairs a written report that explains any nurse staffing concerns found during the investigation. A hospital will submit a plan of correction to address any concerns noted in the OHA's report. Once a plan of correction is approved, OHA will revisit the hospital within 60 days to determine compliance; and
- OHA will maintain and post complaint reports online (coming soon).
View Reports from Nurse Staffing Surveys and Complaint Investigations
Listed below are reports generated from nurse staffing surveys and complaint investigations.
You can search this listing by facility name, city, county or zip code. TIP: Start typing in the search box to filter the list.
- All documents are in PDF format.
Annual Summary Reports