A bill to enter Minnesota into the multistate Nurse Licensure Compact passed the Senate Finance committee this week and is on its way to the Senate Floor. While health systems made it clear this would provide them with more flexibility, questions remain as to whether this will help or hurt our current nursing workforce shortage.
This bill would make it easier for out-of-state nurses to work in Minnesota but does not address the concerns nurses have been raising for years that impact retention and workplace safety. Bedside nurses want more support to make sure they can provide high-quality care for their patients, but none of these nurses’ ideas are included in this bill. Nurses are struggling from emotional strain, burnout, and the fallout from chronic hospital understaffing that started well before the coronavirus pandemic. Instead of out-of-state nurses coming in for temporary help, nurses need long-term supports around mental health, loan forgiveness, and financial aid for students looking to enter the nursing field. DFLers will continue to advocate for solutions that invest in Minnesota nurses and emphasize the state’s high standards for patient care. (SF 2302)