About 7000 nurses have been on strike since yesterday. ABC News ( January 9, 2022) reported that more than 7,000 nurses at two hospitals in New York City went on strike early Monday morning, demanding better working conditions and more staffing. The strike began at 6 a.m. after nurses at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx and Mount Sinai Hospital in Harlem disagreed with hospital administration during a bargaining session Sunday night, according to the NYSNA.

Jones (September 18, 2022) reported that 15,000 nurses decided to strike in Minnesota, representing the largest nursing strike in the history of the United States. Unfortunately, nurses are increasingly required to take on more patients for bedside care to compensate for labor shortages. In addition, the high turnover has created gaps in patient care. For years, hospitals in the United States have faced understaffing problems, and the pandemic did not help. 

Unfortunately, as Jones (September 18, 2022) reported, patients are more likely to die because of preventable reasons when healthcare providers are overworked. When the  15,000 hospital nurses in Minnesota walked off the job after marking two years without a contract, it signaled a tide of more strikes around the country and the western world. The pandemic exacerbated the already strained healthcare system. Short staffing has reached critical levels to provide the best quality care for many patients.

Another concern that should highlight is that more nurses and healthcare workers have experienced increased violence by violence by demanding patients dealing with understaffed facilities. Jones (September 18, 2022) reported that the number of healthcare workers in the United States still needs to recover to its pre-pandemic levels, down over 37,000 workers compared with February 2020. 

The upcoming days, weeks, and months will reveal a lot about the priorities of the healthcare systems and administrations. Prolonged strikes will create a vulnerability in the New York system as time goes by. We hope an agreement comes soon and the facilities will have better staffing and protection against violent patients and visitors on worker safety. Rates of workplace violence in healthcare and social assistance settings have almost doubled since 2010. The Narrative Matters!

References:

ABCNews (January 9, 2022). More than 7,000 nurses go on strike in this city demanding better pay, more staffing. More than 7,000 nurses go on strike in this city demanding better pay, more staffing (msn.com)

Isidore, C. Yurkevich, V, and Luhby, T (January 9, 2023).7,000 ‘exhausted and burnt out’ NYC nurses walk out. Nurses strike: 7,000 nurses at two New York City hospitals walk out after contract negotiations fail | CNN Business

Jones. L (September 18, 2022). Are Registered Nurses Across America Under Appreciated and Pushed to Their Limits? Are Registered Nurses Across America Under Appreciated and Pushed to Their Limits? – The Narrative Matters

Kaufman, M. (January 9, 2023).Thousands of nurses strike across New York City in push for higher staffing levels. Thousands of nurses strike across New York City in push for higher staffing levels – POLITICONYSA (2022). New York State Nurses Association. New York State Nurses Association – InfluenceWatch

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