The New York State Nurses Association delivered an official intent to strike on April 2, 2019. The hospitals which will be affected are New York Presbyterian Hospital, Montefiore, and Mount Sinai Hospital.
The nurses allege that the shortages in staff put the patients at the hospital at risk and their complaints have been ignored.
Presently there are contract talks, and the strike would affect over 10,000 nurses at the three hospitals. It is reported that the nurses have been working since Dec. 2018 without a contract. Since Oct. 2018, 30 talks took place and did not yield any results.
Anthony Ciampa, a registered nurse, stated that nurses were not permitted to take breaks. They also had to double their assignments. Also, if a nurse took a sick day, the unit would become chaotic being short staffed.
The nurses union report that hospitals do not hire enough staff and nurses are forced to carry a caseload of 19 patients. The patients are put at risk due to this.
Registered nurse Cheryl Samuel said that due to the high caseload, it is often impossible to clean the patients, answer their bell, or obtain their stats. The nurses are also unable to eat, and the patients suffer from this.
The NYC Hospital Alliance said in a statement their priority is to provide patients with health care. They will continue to work with NYNSA nurses to come to an agreement which is responsible for the parties, reasonable, and fair.
They say that they have offered an increase in wages, health benefits, pension, and increased staffing. However, the union demanded the nurses leave their patients to advance a political agenda of mandating a staffing ratio that was inflexible and rigid.
The staffing ratio requested would increase costs and lower the care a patient receives at not-for-profit hospitals. If that happened, this would result in layoffs. The NYC Hospital Alliance could not agree to an approach that goes against the beliefs of healthcare experts and nurses.
Written by Barbara Sobel
ABC News: Registered nurses set April 2 strike date at 3 New York City hospital systems
Gothamist: NY Nurses Say A Strike Is Needed To Keep Patients Safe
Nurse.org: This Is Why 12,000 NYC Nurses Will Strike In April 2019
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