December 29, 2017 – House 456, legislation to prohibit nurse mandatory overtime, was introduced into the Ohio House of Representatives by sponsor Representative Robert Sprague on December 29, 2017. The bill would make Ohio the 19th state to make it illegal to force a nurse to work beyond his/her regularly scheduled shift – a practice that can lead to unsafe patient care. Research points to increased medication errors, patient falls and patient morbidity when nurses work lengthy shifts. This legislation would empower nurses to make the decision whether they feel it’s safe to continue to provide the safe care patients deserve.

The legislation has yet to be referred to committee. More information to come. 

Thank our sponsor and co-sponsors here.

Sign the Petition

 Nurses should have the ability to say no when they’re too fatigued to provide the safe care patients deserve. Sign the petition to show lawmakers that Ohio must become the 19th state to eliminate nurse mandatory overtime.

Sign the Petition Today


 Nurses take pride in providing the highest quality care for their patients – that’s why they became a nurse.

However, nurses know that their ability to provide quality, safe care is jeopardized when they are fatigued and overworked due to inadequate nurse staffing levels.

Mandating RNs to work beyond their regularly scheduled hours is commonly used to staff health care facilities on a regular basis.

Fatigue can affect nurses’ ability to deliver optimal patient care.

Research demonstrates that fatigue causes an increased risk in errors, decline in memory, reduced ability to learn, and impaired mood and communication skills. Further, scientific evidence links long working hours to many health effects, including cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Patients, nurses and hospitals all benefit when nurses are at their best. 

The needs and safety of the patients and nurses need to be put first instead of trying to cut costs. When our overriding objective with staffing is to ensure quality care, patient safety and satisfaction, then patients benefit.

When staffing takes into consideration the number of patients, patient needs, the experience and expertise of nurses to ensure patient safety and care at the highest level, nurses benefit.

And when staffing plans are designed and deployed to mitigate nurse fatigue, afford the highest-quality care from nurses and reduce the number of preventable readmissions, hospitals benefit. 

Staffing plans that rely on mandatory overtime to fill gaps are unsafe and unacceptable.

Nurses are being mandated to put their lives and licenses on the line every day in facilities throughout the state, and it will only change when nurses come together and demand change.

That’s why we need you to take action now.


Media Coverage

We surveyed Ohio nurses

about their experiences with mandatory overtimes. Here’s what they had to say:


ONA members are taking the lead to find the right nurse staffing solutions for Ohio. Join us!

Patients deserve safe, quality care, and nurses deserve a safe working environment. ONA has a long-standing presence at the Statehouse and knows better than any other registered-nurse organization how to influence legislation in Ohio that protects and advances the nursing professional and promotes quality care for the citizens of Ohio.

Step 1) Become an ONA Advocate.

ONA advocates will be empowered to take action on staffing and other nursing issues with the support of ONA’s staff. It only takes a few minutes, and any nurse can be an ONA advocate. Sign up today!

If you support nursing in Ohio, sign up to be an ONA Advocate today and share this post with your friends and family!

Posted by Ohio Nurses Association on Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Step 2) Invite your friends and family to support you by becoming an ONA Advocate.

Share this post on Facebook to help us get the word out! We need to activate not only nurses, but the patients we serve in order to transform nurse staffing in Ohio. Social media is one of the most effective ways to spread the word and gather support!

Step 3) Share your story.

Are you being forced to work past your scheduled hours to fill staffing gaps?

Are you are working longer hours with less help?

Are you fatigued because of increased workloads?

Every nurse has been put in a compromising or unsafe position due to unsafe staffing, and in order to effect change, legislators and the public need to hear your story!

Please take a moment to share your story. If you don’t feel comfortable sharing your contact information, that’s okay – your story is still important to helping transform nurse staffing so that nothing is standing in the way of your ability to provide the quality care that Ohio’s citizens deserve!

ONA’s staff and our powerful network of remarkable nurses have been hard at work over the past year formulating our plan to transform staffing in Ohio. 

ONA has been advocating for staffing improvements since the early 2000’s, ultimately passing the first version of legislation in 2008. You can read more about the history of ONA and staffing in the infographic below.

Since that time, the health care landscape has changed dramatically, including an aging patient population and more patients entering the system. In 2015, Ohio nurses conveyed their ongoing concern through a statewide survey on staffing, and ONA members set staffing as a priority at the 2015 convention. 

We have quite a bit planned for 2017, so be sure stay tuned for the latest updates and opportunities to get involved.