Crozer-Chester Medical staff holds picket to raise awareness on issues
UPLAND, Pa. (CBS) -- Nurses, professionals, pharmacists, and paramedics who work at the Crozer-Chester Medical Center held an informational picket Friday morning outside the hospital to help raise community awareness.
The organizations are standing together in an effort to encourage Crozer Health to prioritize patient care by providing support and respect to overworked caregivers from the hospital.
Since COVID-19, the union says healthcare workers from the state have operated from strained conditions such as staffing shortages and increases in shift hours that have weighed on morale and impacted turnover rates. For those who have stayed, they are making a point to demand respect from their employer Prospect.
"We could work elsewhere," says Peggy Malone, RN, a Crozer-Chester Medical Center nurse for 35 years and president of the Crozer Chester Nurses Association, "but we don't want to leave the community – we care deeply about them. All we're asking for from Crozer is respect. And respect is free."
The picket includes members of The Crozer Chester Association, the Crozer Chester Paramedics Association, the Crozer Chester Society of Pharmacists, and Crozer Medical Professionals who have all continued their service out of the love for the community of Delaware County.
While some are zealous about spreading awareness behind the issue, officials from Crozer are treading carefully on how the picket may draw concern. Lori Bookbinder, Manager of Communications and Media Relations for Crozer Health states:
"Crozer Health shares PASNAP's (Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Health Professionals) commitment to providing safe, high-quality patient care. While we respect the union and its representation of our colleagues, we do not support the disruptive environment picketing may create.
Our focus is, and always has been, on delivering the highest quality of care to our patients. We are committed to ensuring that we have the staff we need to safely care for our patients. Crozer Health's RN vacancy rate is 10.5% compared to 15.7% nationally, and its RN annual turnover is 20.4% compared to the national average of 22.5%.
The national crisis involving nurses and other clinical positions continues to be a challenge for every hospital in the country, and we are not unique. We are actively recruiting to fill open nursing and other clinical positions, and offering incentives, such as sign-on bonuses and loan forgiveness, to help recruit staff."
The 750 workers resumed picketing at 11 a.m. and will be conducting a rally and speeches on the issue at noon.
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