Cleveland Clinic destroys wages - page 2

As of today 11/12/01, the Cleveland Clinic has utilized big business tactics to BUST nursing wages.They have brought in a large ammount of foreign nurses and told the agency to take a 7-15 dollar an... Read More

  1. by   Aerolizing
    I think one of the reasons that fav nurses did not cave in was that they pay their nurses approx $10.00 less per hour than the other area agencies. Passing on the savings to the CCF.
    To lower that by another 35% as requested would have made them lose most if not all of their nurses. That is why every agency nurse I have ever spoken to says they belong to more than one agency.
    I have called about working agency after finding out that for hospital prn wages, I would have made exactly half of what they pay agency nurses. Both offered no benefits.
    The Cleveland Clinic is by no means hurting for money. If they tell you they are, ask them what they paid for their new eye center building.

    Still a doctor's hospital.
  2. by
    hi i read your information on the clinic hiring foreign nurses and then cutting pay. CAll the INS this is against the ha-1 visa that the foreign nurses are bought under . . I understand the ins can fine the companies big time . and send the foreign nurses home extremely quickly....I repeat call the INS. If there is anything in writting , any documentation or even a few nurses who tell the truth . According to the new jersey nurse nov 1999, chicago was fined 1.29 million for trying the same thing. so call the INS...... the phone number is in the blue pages it goes by region. i would also write and call your senator .. there are two billl on the floor that the aha and other bad guys are trying to pass and you know they will hire from the phillipines at minimum wage if they can.. What they are doing is agianst the llaw.. Also texan nurses has a lot of this same **** many millions in fine and the nurses couldn't work.. call and then unionize its the only waay..........
  3. by   RNKitty
    Just a naive question. How can nurses work in the US and not pay taxes? Does the IRS know?

    This situation sounds horrible! I'm glad for the thought provoking issues raised here. My support to the nurses who are affected by this and fight it every step of the way!
  4. by   -jt
    The Cleveland Clinic cant find enough nurses who are willing to work for what it wants to pay them as staff or in the conditions it fosters for staff, so it lowers the wages paid to agency nurses in an attempt to force those nurses to take staff positions - hoping to give them no other choice BUT to work as staff for what it wants to pay & in the conditions it fosters or take the chance of finding no work at all. Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles, CA did the same thing a few yrs ago. Lowered the wage it paid the agency nurses, and cut their shifts - then expanded its per diem staffing by offering those same nurses a few dollars more than staff but not as much as they'd earn as agency - with the only other alternative being taking a lesser paying staff position, work agency for less than the hospitals per diems, or not work any shifts there at all. Nice. A disincentive to stop those same nurses from working through expensive agencies. Otherwise known as "strong-arm tactics". Have all those agency nurses refused to work at that facility or are any of them accepting the lower wage? That hospital should be made to eat its words by not only being unable to attract staff but now not being able to find any temps either. Not one agency nurse should agree to take a single shift there. Whats it going to take for nurses to realize standing together in unity is the only way to stop being abused?

    And is anyone surprised that the Cleveland Clinic would stoop to such despicable tactics? Just look at what else the hospital associations are up to over in Ohio:

    American Hospital Association and NCSL Team Up to Advocate for Institutional Licensure in Ohio
    View full results for Health Care Survey

    (Memorandum from the Ohio Board of Nursing to the Ohio Nurses Associtaion) - A meeting of the Healthcare Workforce Shortage Taskforce was held November 26, 2001 at the Department of Health. The speakers in this meeting were an affiliate from the American Hospital Association and a staff person fro the National Council of State Legislatures. They both reported that they have visited many states together, giving presentations in tandem. both suggested using what they termed "innovative" strategies to solve the workforce problem. A brief synopsis of their presentations is described below, as are reactions from taskforce members and commenting gallery observors.

    Salsberg emphasized building career ladders and felt that if auxiliary health "PARAPROFESSIONALS" (UAPS) had more opportunity for advancement, health fields as a whole would have more employees. . He admits that the problem with career ladders is that facilities can't implement the plan fast enough, since they need workers now, not when those individuals are done with school.

    Salsberg doesn't believe marketing is a way to solve the nurse shortage, since nursing is already well known, unlike some allied health professions such as lab technicians. He suggested considering demonstration projects where regulations are waived on a facility for a period of time (1-2 years), to test ideas such as institutional licensure, and overlap of career tasks.

    Ohio Representative Sally Conway Kilbane (taskforce member and an RN who has not practiced in decades) asked many questions regarding this idea and proposed that possibly these sorts of demonstration projects could begin with the military. She also said she thinks licensure is an "artificial barrier" to workforce and believes that the situation is political and therefore difficult to examine objectively. She wanted direction from the speakers on how to make it less political. She also said that licensure requirements haven't changed with the changing technology. She suggested that many health care jobs are similar and don't need so many "barriers" to one another.

    The Executive Director of Ohio's Medical Board was present in the gallery, and he questioned why, if the scopes of practice are so similar, there is such discrepancy in education, say for example, between a physician assistant, APN and MD. There was no real response to his question.

    Salsberg also suggested that another approach he finds innovative would be reconsidering who can do medication administration. He also said he thinks prohibition of mandatory overtime and mandating minimum staffing ratios as addressed in Ohio House Bill 78, is counterproductive,
    and he doesn't support this option. Salsberg believes it is up to the facility, not the legislature, to establish these guidelines. Salsberg also frowns upon requiring more credentials, citing as an example, going from an industry standard of accepting associate degree grads to preferring BSNs. He believes tougher credentials pose obstacles to increasing the workforce.

    Henderson offered ideas from other states, particularly California and Texas. He said that California offers grants to Community Colleges for associate degree candidates who demonstrate that in their region, there is a shortage. He also said that generally, he believes scholarship programs are not a sufficient remedy because they only affect a small number of graduates. Henderson reported that at this point, California is the only state to pass minimum staffing and prohibition on mandatory overtime laws. He believes these options are controversial because they are costly and don't have proven results . He reported that Texas proposed a neutral nursing center that is simiar to North Carolina's, but funded by a licensure surcharge ($500 thousand annually).

    Ohio's Director of Aging, Joan Lawrence, commented that looking into alternative models for career tasks is difficult because she doubts some professionals would willingly part with their job responsiblities. Looking for alternatives requires neutrality, Henderson responded.

    Henderson also said that some states are revising their licensure renewal forms to include demographic questions such as, "What type of setting do you work in," and "How many hours are you required to work."

    Henderson suggested looking into institutional licensure. Salsberg interjected that while he supported institutional licensure, he acknowledges that there are problems. Professional organizations would be in an uproar, and many don't trust the institutions to do it, thinking they have an "agenda" or are "only concerned with the bottom line". But, Salsberg says, to think that licensure is the only thing protecting safety is inaccurate.
    Henderson says that under the right leadership, institutional licensure could work.
    Ohio Nurses Association
    4000 E. Main Street
    Columbus, O 43213-2983
    Phone: 614-237-5414
    Fax: 614-237-6074 >>>>>>>>>

    Anybody else getting an uneasy feeling there? This meeting was between the Ohio Legislative Council, Dept of Health and the American Hospital Association in that state to convince the legislature that the solution to the nursing crisis is to expand the responsibilities of UAPS, let the hospitals decide which interventions can be delegated to UAPs, put hospitals in charge of LICENSING employees, refute the negative effects of mandatory OT & continue to use it as a staffing alternative, reject funding scholarships for nursing students, and blame Nurses and our professional organizations for their troubles - rather than looking at their own administrative practices and policies & the conditions they have us working in. Taking none of the blame or responsibility themselves. Just look at who had the Legislators and Health Depts ear - hospital administrators and a nurse who hadnt practiced for decades and who was agreeing with the hospital administrators in deciding our fate.

    If that alone is not reason enough for nurses to get political & get in there to take control for themselves and their own profession, I dont know what is. If we dont do it en mass, THESE are the people who are going to be making the laws that dictate to us what our profession is and making the laws that we nurses will have to work by.

    And we'll all be stuck with what they decide for us because we didnt step in to make the laws for nursing ourselves. It would be nice if we didnt have to take time out to go to our state capitols, or call our representatives, & get into all that political stuff but we are forced to do it because others are there trying to do it to us. We have to get in there ourselves for self-preservation. If we dont, and administrators like these convince the legislators to legally change the scope of our profession for their own benefit, we have only ourselves to blame.

    Now its the job of the Ohio Nurses Association and the nurses of that state to convince the legislators and the Dept of Health that the AHA is wrong. A nice avalanche of post cards, letters, email & phone calls to the legislature from every RN in that state would do the trick.
    Last edit by -jt on Jan 11, '02
  5. by   -jt
    <told the agency to take a 7-15 dollar an hour cut or they would not be used. All agencies complied.>

    So for the non-unionized nurses from the agency, there goes their premimum salaries right out the window - here today - gone tomorrow - poof! - just like that. Now what?

    Didnt some agency nurses say they were protected against abuses because they negotiated their own contracts indivdually with their agency and didnt need to be a collective group? If that was true, they wouldnt have just lost a chunk of their salaries in the blink of an eye on the whim of some administrator.

    So what happens to all these individual, non-union nurses when all the other hospitals in driving distance do the same thing and get away with setting a new lower standard for nurses pay in that area? Essentially, the agency nurses need to get together & all refuse to work in these facilities.

    What the hospital is doing by trying to put agency nursing out of business is nothing but strong-arm tactics to get rid of the competition, and force those nurses to accept staff jobs which they already have found to be unacceptable. This is like the hospital "making them an offer they cant refuse". Those agency nurses should "with-hold services" from every hospital that lowered their wages and not fall into the hospitals trap by taking its staff positions. The hospital thinks they will force agency nurses to come on staff. In reality, it will force those nurses to leave bedside nursing altogether.

    Not only will the hospitals not be able to find staff nurses but now they wont be able to find temp nurses either to fill the gaps. The hospital just might be forced to admit their little trick didnt work and might be forced to look at ITSELF and fix the things that are keeping nurses away from its staff positions once & for all.
  6. by   25yearsrn
    Very sad to see nurses treated so badly. Such disrespect will drive more nurses into other professions. After all, isn't that one of the big reasons for so few enrolling into nursing programs today! As I understand it, younger women today have so many options before them, so why would they chose to work hard with bad hours,poor pay and no respect and dignity. They will not. The INS really do need to get more involved. Memorial Mission Hospital in Asheville,NC has recently recruited 50 Filipino nurses as well. I do not work there and I am glad of it.
  7. by   hadit
    Dissappointing to see all agencies complied with the threat..... Money talks again.
    Any updates on this situation?

    Minnesota passed a law this summer limiting what agencies can pay nurses....someone told me they thought it only applied to LTC facilites, but I'm not sure on that. They too were hoping to force nurses back to the facilities they'd left.
  8. by   -jt
    <Minnesota passed a law this summer limiting what agencies can pay nurses....>

    And where were all the nurses who work agency when this was being pushed through legislation? I hope they at least tried to stop this bill from passing, check which legislators voted for it & send them a note he has just lost their vote. How many nurses work for agencies in Minnesota? Most of them are "the voting public". Were those hundreds of agency nurses pounding down the doors of their legislators opposing this bill before it became law? If legislators didnt hear from the nurses who would be affected by this, how would they know not to support it if all they heard from was the hospital association & its point of view? Did anybody educate the legislators as to why this bill shouldnt be passed?

    Did agency nurses even know the bill existed? Did the agencies they work for know about it, alert the nurses to pressure the legislators not to pass it, and pressure them itself? I know one of the reasons these nurses work agency is because they dont want to get into the political BS at work, but if nurses dont get more into the political BS going on at their state capitol, THIS is what happens - OTHER people decide for nurses what nurses are going to do........ and then nurses have to live with it.

    The state may have lowered the amount that can be paid to the agencies but dont think the agency itself took a cut. 10:1 odds that the agency is getting the same fee - taking it from the amount they would have paid the nurse.
    Last edit by -jt on Jan 11, '02
  9. by   nightingale
    I am interested in looking at this further.... I was not aware of this information. Ofcourse, I am not from Minnesota.... but ....
  10. by   25yearsrn
    One of many ways for nurses to get involved with state level politics is to support your state nurse's association. They can lobby for you. But I believe the more you get involved the better.
  11. by   nightingale
    I agree...... just joined the ANA and sent info off to my state association!

  12. by   NicuGal
    Ah , the wonderful, world class care CCF....I wouldn't work there if they tripled my salary! When they opened their NICU we had a big exit from our unit to there..and they are now finding out that it isn't a great place to work...sure, the money sounds awesome, but you pay out the butt for insurance and such....$40 to park blocks away. No thanks. And then they bring in the Filipino nurses.

    The CCF will always do what it wants and there is nothing anyone can do about it. They will tell your right up front..don't like it...there is the door, see ya later. They will never unionize either. The unit managers have very little input into hiring also...their personnel department handles that. Some of the units even have those little tracking things on the ID badges so that people know where you are all the time. Again, no thanks. I think that it is easy for us to say do this and do that...but that place is an entity into itself. Where else would ask you to kindly donate one of your PTO days back to the institute so that they can better fund their big buildings and buying of out parcels for clinics? You better believe they did. My DH works there and he tells me this stuff...he isn't a nurse and he said there is no way he would ever recommend a nurse to go there.

    They opened their supposed NICU without enough staff to run it...they couldn't get docs in there. And we used to get the transports from there...that place is a walking malpractice heaven for deliveries...every child we received from them was neurologically damaged in one way or another. Devastatingly most of the time. They have no right to be doing high risk deliveries over there...they were supposed to be shipping the moms to where I work...but they didn't because...hey we're CCF and we can do what we want. They are always getting fined and things from the State, government, whatever...and they don't care. The magic of money....the power of it. Too many political ties....things will NEVER change there. As for the pay cuts for agency...well...just be glad it wasn't regular staff.

    Sorry for the rant, but that have to know it to appreciate it..

  13. by   -jt
    There is no facility where things cant change.

    Things can change anywhere.....if the nurses are willing to do what it takes to make it happen.

    Such a shame that we allow places like this to get away with all that BS.