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May 21, 2013 | By Maria L. La Ganga
SAN FRANCISCO -- A strike by patient-care workers concerned about pension changes and staffing levels has led to the cancellation of an expected 150 surgeries at UC San Francisco Medical Center over the two-day labor action and will affect at least another 200 patients, hospital officials said Tuesday. As strikers in green T-shirts blew whistles and chanted outside of the hilltop hospital, staff worked to discharge as many patients as possible, dropping the normal census at the adult facility and adjacent UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital to 398 from the usual 505. “Mark Laret, the hospital CEO, eliminated 300 positions in April, pretty much across everything,” said Randy Johnson, an MRI technologist and member of the striking American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.
May 21, 2013 | By Anna Gorman and Maria L. La Ganga, Los Angeles Times
A strike by University of California patient care workers Tuesday caused the cancellation of hundreds of surgeries, the closure of laboratory stations and the diversion of emergency room patients, officials said. The hospitals prepared for the two-day strike by postponing elective surgeries and hiring temporary workers, but services still were affected after thousands of employees took to the picket line at the medical centers in Los Angeles, Irvine, San Diego, San Francisco and Sacramento, where the UC Davis facility is located.
May 21, 2013 | By Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
Respiratory therapists, nursing aides, surgical technicians and other patient care workers plan to stage a walkout starting Tuesday morning at five University of California medical centers. More than 12,000 workers from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees are expected to participate in the two-day strike over staffing, pay and pension reform, union officials said. An additional 3,400 workers from the University Professional and Technical Employees union plan a one-day sympathy strike.
May 20, 2013 | By Anna Gorman
A Sacramento County Superior Court judge ruled Monday that about 450 employees cannot participate in this week's planned walkout at the University of California medical centers. The unions must maintain a minimum level of staffing among certain units, including the burn centers, the intensive care units and the neonatal intensive care units, the judge ruled. If all the respiratory therapists in the burn centers and poison control units were to strike, the court ruled, there would be a "substantial and imminent threat to public health or safety.
May 19, 2013 | By Anna Gorman, Los Angeles Times
Patient care workers at the University of California's medical centers plan to stage a two-day strike next week, but the number taking part will be decided Monday in Sacramento County Superior Court. A judge is expected to rule on a request for a temporary restraining order limiting the number of workers who may take part in the walkout. According to UC officials, the focus is on workers considered essential for patient care. The union representing nearly 13,000 patient healthcare workers has notified UC that it plans to strike over contract issues from 4 a.m. Tuesday to 4 a.m. Thursday.
May 16, 2013 | By Larry Gordon, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - Facing a possible two-day strike next week by patient care and technical workers, the five large University of California medical centers are starting to cancel elective surgeries that had been scheduled as soon as Monday, officials said. Emergency care will not be shut and patients already in the five hospitals across the state will continue to receive care. But many elective procedures will delayed until after the potential strike, set for Tuesday and Wednesday, according to John Stobo, UC's senior vice president for health sciences and services.
May 10, 2013 | By Anna Gorman
The union representing nearly 13,000 University of California patient-care workers announced plans Friday to strike later this month, but UC officials said they would seek a restraining order to prevent any such action. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees3299 issued a 10-day notice to the UC Office of the President and set the strike date for May 21 and 22. The union represents respiratory therapists, licensed vocational nurses, pharmacy technicians and other workers at both the campuses and the medical centers.
May 9, 2013 | By Beth Ann Swan
In 2011, my husband, Eric, a trial attorney, was felled by a brain stem stroke just before he was to board a flight at O'Hare in Chicago. He was just 53 years old with no prior health conditions or problems. From the outset, we knew his recovery and rehabilitation would be long and difficult. We didn't know that his transition to post-hospital medical care would be just as challenging. I'm the dean and a professor at the Jefferson School of Nursing at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, and I'm a registered nurse.
April 29, 2013 | By Anna Gorman
The union representing nearly 13,000 University of California patient-care workers plans to take a strike vote beginning Tuesday. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, or AFSCME 3299, will hold the strike vote through Thursday and announce results next week. The vote comes after nearly a year of negotiations between the workers and UC over staffing, pay and pension reforms. The contract expired in September. Union President Kathryn Lybarger said the university is putting profits above patient safety and that workers want better staffing and fair pay. The hospitals have seen more understaffing and the use of temporary employees, she said.
April 17, 2013 | By Ari Bloomekatz
Private, tax-exempt hospitals spent an average of 7.5% of their operating expenses on community benefits in 2009, according to a new study that raises questions about whether the amount is enough. Overall, the study published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine showed hospitals "varied widely" in the level of "community benefits" they provided, ranging from 20% of the operating budget at some to 1% at others. They concluded that most of the expenditures benefited patient care while "little was spent on community health improvement.
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