New Jersey doctors' protest reroutes patients

  1. Hospital emergency room patients in New Jersey have been feeling anything but patient with the start of a three-day work slowdown by doctors. More than 1,000 physicians closed their practices early to protest skyrocketing medical-malpractice insurance premiums and to send a message to state lawmakers.

    Philadelphia Inquirer, Feb. 4, 2003

    A doctor's strike is certainly a problem if you are in a capitated insurance plan---only can see your PCP, unable to see specialist without a referral AND have high ER fees too!!
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  3. by   TheBrainMusher
    Its a shame what people have to revert to, in order to make a point! My friend's mother and sister work in the Virtua system, its crazy right now. I can't even get a hold of the doctors office and I don't want to make an appointment. I work for a bank and I'm trying to do a loan for them. But I can't get in touch with them, the lines are busy and the staff isn't in ...
  4. by   oramar
    I saw a doc with a sign that said, "if you are sick call a trial lawyer or you state Representative".
  5. by   -jt
    <I saw a doc with a sign that said, "if you are sick call a trial lawyer or you state Representative".>

    You know how Im all for RNs taking a stand & even going on strike if necessary for patient safety and working conditions which affects that but I have to be honest - I am having some difficulty with this MD walk-out. When nurses strike, we give a 10 day notice to ensure that patients are moved to other facilities for proper care, allow the hospital time to mobilize other nurses on staff to step into the bedside role to provide the care for those who cant be moved, and we also form patient safety teams of striking nurses who monitor that this care is being given. When money is an issue, its because of the effect low pay is having on recruitment/retention - which translates into unsafe patient situations like high pt loads and dangerous forced overtime. Its always about the patient. I have never seen a nurse on the strike line with such a callous sign such as this one held by a striking MD. And I have never seen nurses strike solely for their tax-deductible out of pocket expenses. Im trying hard not to call this MD walk-out "unprofessional", but signs like that do not help their cause. Who is there taking care of their pts anyway? Did they line up all the MD/CEOs to take their place for the duration? Can these MDs be sued if a patient suffers or dies from a medical problem that he couldnt get attended because all the doctors in the area had phone messages telling people the office is closed for the strike - If youre sick, call your legislator.

    I dont know. Theres just something about this that is bothering me. Maybe its the fact that a group of MDs here & there walk out & the governors immediately are falling all over themselves, rushing to hand them new malpractice laws, at the expense of injured pts, to appease these doctors & increase their income ASAP, while thousands of nurses all over the country go on strike for pt safety but the legislations we need for staffing & mandatory ot languish in state capitols & Congress and for us, governors are no where to be seen.
  6. by   MrsK1223
    I think these Dr's know that hospitals and legislatures know that these docs bring the money in...a doc's good reputation will draw people in and administration depends on these docs to make money for them...Unfortunately, Dr's (thinking they are above most anyone for the most part) can demand more of what they want and get it....they are just given more respect. As nurses, we are not spineless and certainly not in the profession for money and we are still considered part of the low end of the food chain. I've been told by management from other employers that nurses are a dime a dozen...blah blah blah....Theres gotta be something we can do that can begin to raise our value...cause no one thinks we are except us the nurses and maybe some patients but I've experienced some patient complete disregard for nurses.
  7. by   -jt
    My brother is in a NJ hospital & just had surgery. I happened to be in the room when his attending surgeon, who is also the director of the surigical dept, came in to see him post-op & I asked about the strike. He looked uncomfortable & said that not all doctors there agree with the action, are not participating, and believe there are other ways to address the issue rather than leaving pts without access to physicians. Lucky for my brother this guy felt the way he did. I just dont know how the striking MDs can do this. When nurses strike, they have to give 10 days notice & allow the hospital time to move pts to other facilities & mobilize nursing management to provide for the care of those who cant be moved. What are pts supposed to do if all the MDs in an area walk out & leave no other alternatives for the pts care? Wouldnt that be like cops & firemen going on strike? They cant strike because there is no one to provide their service & that would leave the public at risk, so how come all the MDs in an entire area can do it if they want to & tell sick people that if they need medical care call a legislator?