Nurses and Midwives are rallying today at Maitland and Singleton hospitals calling on candidates in the New South Wales election to commit to nurse-to-patient ratios.

The NSW Nurses and Midwives Association is calling for surgical and medical wards to have a one-to-four ratio in the morning and afternoon and a one-to-seven ration on the night shift as well as a 24/7 one-to-three ratio in the emergency department, pediatric and maternity wards

The action from the Association follows fresh statistics released from the Bureau of Health Information’s

Quarterly Report

showing a 6 per cent increase in emergency department patient presentations at Maitland Hospital between October and December, compared to this time last year.

Singleton Hospital saw a 2 per cent increase in patients in its emergency department during the same period.

Singleton Hospital Midwife Janine Moffat said the current situation is not good enough for staff or patients.

“Currently in Singleton, we can work anywhere from one nurse to eight, nine or ten patients and if you are the midwife on and you have got a lady in the birthing unit and you have got one or two postnatal women, those postnatal women miss out on care because you are the only midwife on.

“We are not asking for money, we are asking for safe nurse-to-patient ratios so that people get the health care they deserve and nurses can go home knowing that they did a good job,” Ms Moffat said.

Maitland Hospital Nurse Jane Burr said nurse-to-patient ratios are the only way to provide a safe environment.

Maitland Hospital. Photo: The Newcastle Herald.

Singleton Hospital. Photo: The Singleton Argus.