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November 16, 2007

Nurses continue strike

Registered Nurses are striking the Appalachian Regional Hospital chain. Here's an article. I'm from southeastern Kentucky and am very familiar with this situation. Don't believe the hospital claims. The nurses are abused, and patient care suffers for it.

My parents still live in an ARH service area. My mom had surgery this week, and she went to Tennessee to have it done. My Dad has officially informed our entire family that he is not to be taken to any ARH facility, not even for emergencies if it can be helped. Why? His mother was in an ARH facility last year. Dad told me this week he thought she wouldn't have pulled through if family hadn't been able to stay with her 24/7.

The hospital was chronically understaffed when my wife worked for ARH several years ago. I have friends who still work for ARH, and they have complained about understaffing for years. Just before the RNs strike took effect, one of my friends was forced to work three double shifts in a row with about 4 hours sleep between them. He was told, as they all are, that if they don't double back they'll be fired and reported to the Board of Nursing for abandoning patients.

It looks as though ARH has the upper hand now. I understand some have petitioned to dissolve their union. All I can say is come to Louisville. We need lot's of nurses up here.


Anonymous said...

Wonder how many nurses called in sick that day. At the time of the strike, the average was over 20%/day. No responsible business can staff for that. Get the facts.

GreatBlueWhale said...

I don't know about you. but if I missed 1 day in five, I wouldn't have a job very long. The answer to that is discipline and dismiss and hire new staff. The hospitals are using temp agency staff now to make up the shortfall. They have the same option when they are short staffed in the normal course of business. The facility where my wife works has agency nurses in house every day. In ten years, she has never, not once, been forced to work overtime. Not once, as opposed to her weekly mandated overtime when she worked for ARH, a practice which continues today. Fact.

I can't help it if they don't manage their employees in a responsible manner.