Registered nurses with union National Nurses United voted Tuesday to authorize their contract negotiators to submit a ten-day strike notice if their issues remain unresolved, the union said in a press release.
The strike authorization could affect ongoing negotiations at 15 hospitals affiliated with the Tennessee-based, for-profit company Hospital Corporation of America (HCA). Most of the hospitals included fall under HCA’s West Florida region but also include facilities in Kansas, Missouri, Nevada and Texas.
Nurse leaders with the National Nurses Organizing Committee have said they will only authorize a strike if their concerns about turnover rates, recruitment, retention and staffing grid compliance at their hospitals are not addressed.
“With this strike authorization vote, nurses are making it absolutely clear that we are ready to strike to ensure optimal care for our patients,” said Jack Hood, an ICU RN at Oak Hill Hospital in Brooksville, Florida, in a press release. “From Florida to Nevada, we are united in our commitment to negotiating a contract that provides solutions to the issues we are raising including turnover, recruitment and retention, and consistent compliance with staffing grids.”
At many of the HCA facilities, more than 50 percent of nurses hired have left within three years of starting, according to hospital data gathered by the union.
Nurses at the Kansas and Florida locations have worked without a contract since May 31. Contracts with the Nevada and Texas hospitals expired on June 30, and since then all parties have been in negotiations.
More than 7,000 NNU nurses at these facilities could be involved in the strike, according to the press release.
Healthcare Traveler Today reached out to HCA West Florida for a response to union claims about the affiliated hospitals mentioned but did not receive one by press time. This story will be updated when new information is available.
Which hospitals could strike?
The hospitals currently under contract negotiations include:
- Blake Medical Center – Bradenton
- Oak Hill Hospital – Brooksville
- Osceola Regional Medical Center – Kissimmee
- Fawcett Memorial Hospital – Port Charlotte
- Central Florida Regional Hospital – Sanford
- Doctors Hospital of Sarasota – Sarasota
- Northside Hospital – St. Petersburg
- St. Petersburg General Hospital – St. Petersburg
- Medical Center of Trinity – Trinity
- Menorah Medical Center – Overland Park
- Research Medical Center – Kansas City
- MountainView Hospital – Las Vegas
- Corpus Christi Medical Center – Corpus Christi
- Las Palmas Medical Center – El Paso
- Del Sol Medical Center – El Paso
What states have quick licensure access?
Of the five states involved, Nevada is the only state where compact licenses aren’t accepted.
Missouri is a walk-through state, so travelers interested in working strike contracts could get a temporary license within 24 hours.
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