Nursing strike to protest poor H1N1 preparedness.

  1. 0
    I just heard about this and am hoping someone in California knows more details.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/press...09+PRN20091019

    Some 16,000 registered nurses at 39
    hospitals at three Catholic hospital chains in California and Nevada will join
    a one-day strike and picket October 30 as RNs step up the protest over poor
    readiness by many hospitals to confront the H1N1 pandemic, the California
    Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee (CNA/NNOC) announced
    today.
    Central to the walkout is concern over the failure of the hospital chains to
    assure adequate safety precautions for patients, their families, nurses, and
    other healthcare employees for the escalating H1N1 "swine flu" pandemic.
    I wish I knew what is meant by adequate safety precautions. Perhaps someone can fill in some details here.

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  2. 1 Comments...

  3. 2
    Quote from azhiker
    I wish I knew what is meant by adequate safety precautions. Perhaps someone can fill in some details here.

    Quote from FluTrackers.com
    Major Nurses Strike and Picket Looms October 30 As RNs to Protest Hospital Gaps in Swine Flu Safety
    16,000 RNs at 39 Facilities in California and Nevada

    As many as 16,000 registered nurses from three large Catholic hospital chains in California and Nevada will join a one-day strike and picket October 30, as RNs step up the protest over poor readiness by many hospitals to confront the H1N1 swine flu pandemic, the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee (CNA/NNOC) announced today.

    The strike will affect hospitals across California from San Bernardino and Long Beach in the south to Eureka and Redding in the north, and include major facilities in Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Bakersfield, Stockton, and the Central Coast. Additionally, nurses will picket major facilities in Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada.

    Protecting nurses, patients and families in the center of the pandemic storm
    Central to the nurses' walkout is ongoing concern over the failure of the hospital chains to assure adequate safety precautions for patients, their families, nurses, and other healthcare employees in the wake of the escalating H1N1 “swine flu” pandemic.

    In particular, the RNs say, many hospitals continue to do a poor job at isolating patients with H1N1 symptoms and other steps to limit contagion, or provide sufficient fit-tested N95 respirators and other protective gear for healthcare workers and patients.

    Updated Centers for Disease Control recommendations released last week re-affirmed guidelines for isolation and safety equipment, and urged hospitals to avoid policies that encourage employees to work when sick, another problem in many hospitals.

    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration said last week that it plans to issue a compliance directive to ensure uniform procedures "to identify and minimize or eliminate high to very high risk occupational exposures" to H1N1.

    CNA/NNOC wants hospitals to formally adopt all CDC and Cal-OSHA guidelines to make them enforceable by CNA/NNOC contract provisions assuring the highest safety measures are met, are uniform, and consistently applied throughout the systems.

    For months, RNs have repeatedly voiced alarm at inadequate H1N1 hospital safeguards. In August, CNA/NNOC released the findings of a survey of 190 U.S. hospitals where RNs cited widespread problems with poor segregation of patients, lack of sufficient N95 masks, numerous hospitals where nurses have been infected, inadequate training for hospital staff, and punitive sick leave policies.

    But substantial problems remain. In California alone, more than 3,000 people have been hospitalized, and over 200 have died, including an RN infected on the job at one of the hospitals where RNs will strike.

    “Our hospital isn’t being proactive in preparing for the expected onslaught of H1N1 infected patients,” said Kathy Dennis, RN at Mercy General Hospital in Sacramento. “We can’t get enough N95 masks, patients are not being properly isolated, and RNs are not being kept informed of the latest guidelines. Last time I worked, it took me more than four hours to get masks when we ran out. We must put the proper precautions in place now before flu seasons peaks or we will all be in serious trouble.”

    "When nurses are exposed to tuberculosis, the hospital notifies us. When nurses are exposed to head lice the hospital notifies us. Why then are we not told when we are exposed to H1N1? All staff have the right to know if they have been exposed in order to keep our patients from further unnecessary exposure," said Carol Koelle, RN at St. Bernardine Medical Center in San Bernardino.

    Adherence to safe staffing ratios
    Complicating swine flu preparedness, RNs say many hospitals fall far short in assuring proper RN staffing as required under a California law requiring minimum, safe RN-to-patient staffing ratios. CNA/NNOC proposes RN monitors to assure compliance with the law in all hospital units.

    “Our hospitals are not adhering to the safe staffing ratios law,” said Allen Fitzpatrick, RN who works at St. Mary’s Medical Center in San Francisco. “Nurses are being harassed by supervisors to accept unsafe assignments and not to take any breaks. Bedside nurses are busy enough trying to provide care to our patients. We need someone to stand up for safe RN-to-patient staffing.”

    “We have a comprehensive staffing proposal on the table because no matter how much care a patient requires our hospital won’t add nurses and has eliminated our aides, “ said Susan Johnson, an Obstetrics RNs at St. Joseph Hospital in Eureka. “We work 12-hour shifts, often without a break, and are assigned to work outside our area of expertise. We have proposed a break relief nurse on every unit and a safe ‘floating’ policy, all essential patient care protections that already exists in most hospitals throughout the state.”

    RNs also want to stop the practice of some of the hospitals that mandate RNs to "float" – work in clinical areas outside their expertise, training, and orientation – which puts patients at risk. Additionally, the RNs are insisting that hospitals withdraw efforts to reduce healthcare benefits by shifting more costs to nurses and reducing coverage options. In several areas, hospitals are also demanding a wage freeze.

    "As nurses, we see the consequences when employers reduce coverage, it's disgraceful to see our hospitals taking the same step," said Debra Amour RN at Seton Medical Center in Daly City. "Such demands, would also sharply undermine the ability of the hospitals to keep nurses at the bedside and recruit new RNs."

    RNs will be participating in the strike or picketing at the following facilities:

    Catholic Healthcare West

    California
    Arroyo Grande Community Hospital
    Bakersfield Memorial Hospital
    Bruceville Terrace - Sacramento
    California Hospital Medical Center - Los Angeles
    Community Hospital of San Bernardino
    Dominican Hospital - Santa Cruz
    French Hospital Medical Center - San Luis Obispo
    Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center
    Marian Medical Center - Santa Maria
    Mercy General Hospital - Sacramento
    Mercy Hospital - Bakersfield
    Mercy Hospital of Folsom
    Mercy Medical Center - Merced
    Mercy Medical Center Redding
    Mercy Medical Center - Mt. Shasta
    Mercy San Juan Medical Center - Carmichael
    Mercy Southwest Hospital - Bakersfield
    Methodist Hospital - Sacramento
    Sacramento Foundation Clinics
    Saint Francis Memorial Hospital - San Francisco
    St. Bernardine Medical Center - San Bernardino
    St. Joseph's Behavioral Health Center - Stockton
    St. Joseph’s Medical Center - Stockton
    St. Mary Medical Center - Long Beach
    St. Mary's Medical Center - San Francisco
    Sequoia Hospital - Redwood City
    Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital - Grass Valley
    Woodland Healthcare

    Nevada
    Saint Mary's Regional Medical Center - Reno
    St. Rose Dominican Hospital, Rose de Lima - Henderson
    St. Rose Dominican Hospital, Siena - Henderson
    St. Rose Dominican Hospital, San Martin - Las Vegas

    Daughters of Charity Health System
    O'Connor Hospital - San Jose
    Saint Louise Regional Hospital - Gilroy
    Seton Medical Center - Daly City
    St. Vincent Medical Center - Los Angeles

    St. Joseph Health System
    Petaluma Valley Hospital
    St. Joseph Hospital - Eureka
    St. Mary Medical Center - Apple Valley
    http://www.flutrackers.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=128974
    Pfiesty and indigo girl like this.


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