California, the highest paying state for RNs, is about to have a little problem on its hands. Registered nurses are planning to picket 21 Kaiser Permanente hospitals in the state on December 19th from 2-6 PM.
They’re doing so to fight against what they’re calling “persistently inadequate nurse staffing” in emergency care and other hospital areas (per Patch.com). They’re also upset about patients who have been turned away from care. The announcement about the strike was made last Friday by the California Nurses Association (CNA) and National Nurses United (NNU).
A letter to Kaiser CEO Bernard Tyson sent in November by CNA Co-President Zenei Cortez, RN, established that nurses are worried Kaiser is “consistently and systematically failing to provide sufficient staff to take care of their patients. This concern has been raised with executives locally and regionally in many formats.”
Apparently their concerns have not been addressed–or at least, not in a way that feels adequate to the nurses involved. Katy Roemer of Oakland told Patch.com that “Kaiser has refused to provide the nursing staff needed to safely take care of patients in our hospitals. We are seeing patients who used to be admitted into the hospital for care now being forced to stay in the Emergency Department for hours and hours.”
For their part, the Kaiser Foundation said in a prepared statement, “The union leadership’s claims about Kaiser Permanente have little to do with facts, and are a tremendous disservice to the outstanding work being done each and every day by our nurses, physicians and staff on behalf of our members and patients.”
Find out more about the story over on the Fremont Patch. Do you feel similar concerns about your place of work?