§21-5F-1. Legislative findings and purpose.

The Legislature finds and declares that:

(1) It is essential that qualified registered nurses and other licensed health care workers providing direct patient care be

available to meet the needs of patients;

(2) Quality patient care is jeopardized by nurses that work unnecessarily long hours in hospitals;

(3) Health care workers, especially nurses, are leaving their profession because of workplace stresses, long work hours and depreciation of their essential role in the delivery of quality, direct patient care;

(4) It is necessary to safeguard the efficiency, health and general well-being of health care workers in hospitals, as well as the health and general well-being of the persons who use their services;

(5) It is further necessary that health care workers be aware of their rights, duties and remedies with regard to hours worked

and patient safety; and

(6) Hospitals should provide adequate safe nursing staffing without the use of mandatory overtime.