One of the more genius moves made by the Biden administration was forcing every worker that had a government dollar connected to it to get vaccinated. Many people in the medical community refused to do it resulting in the firing of nurses and doctors across the nation.
In Minnesota, employees from several different health systems refused to vaccinate, resulting in their termination. While most employees from these systems did get vaccinated, systems saw double-digit percentages among the staff, and the bloodletting began. The Mayo Clinic, in particular, fired 700 staffers.
The decision to fire nurses in an already unstable hospital environment caused a massive backfire, so much so that FEMA had to get involved to assist in the transportation of patients.
Now, thanks to the horrendous working conditions brought on by short-staffed hospitals, nurses in Minnesota are going on strike by the thousands.
According to The Hill, some 15,000 nurses are forming what is becoming the largest private-sector nurses’ strike in U.S. history:
Nurses at 16 hospitals in Minnesota’s Twin Cities and elsewhere in the state rallied Sunday night and began the three-day strike Monday morning after months of contract negotiations with hospital executives, the union said.
The Minnesota nurses are demanding safer working conditions, better nurse retention and safer staffing systems, according to National Nurses United.
“Corporate healthcare policies in our hospitals have left nurses understaffed and overworked, while patients are overcharged, local hospitals and services are closed, and executives take home million-dollar paychecks,” said MNA’s First Vice President Chris Rubesch in a statement from the union.
The warning signs hadn’t just been there, they’d been blaring for some time. Two years into the COVID pandemic, staffing issues, and workplace violence were already being voiced as two of the main concerns for nurses. The Hill reported that 70 percent of nurses said that the shortage of healthcare workers had only gotten worse since the pandemic. The shortage was so horrible that the nurses that remained were being given tasks for which they had no skill set or training.
If the Minnesota healthcare system was already struggling, this is going to send it into an all-out crisis. The quality of healthcare in the state will fall drastically, likely in certain areas with higher populations.
According to NBC News, the nurses are seeking a 30 percent wage increase. The hospitals have countered by offering 10 – 12 percent. Leaders are calling the wage demands unaffordable and warning that any wage hikes will mean passing the costs on to patients. Regardless, strikers are holding strong, or at least for now:
“The union rejected all requests for mediation and held fast to wage demands that were unrealistic, unreasonable and unaffordable,” several of the Twin Cities hospitals under strike said in a joint statement.
Second-year nurse Madi Gay, who was picketing Monday morning after completing her overnight shift, told the Star Tribune that she had already reduced her hours at M Health Fairview Southdale Hospital because of the stress and frustration of caring for so many severely ill patients.
“How long can you keep this up?” Gay asked. “My license is on the line.”
Union spokesman Sam Fettig said the nurses settled on a three-day rather than open-ended strike because of concerns about the impact of drawn-out labor action on patient care.
While nurses are indeed suffering from increased regulations and unreasonable demands, the patients are going to be the most affected. This staffing issue shouldn’t have happened in the first place, but despite warnings that the already over-burdened healthcare community would take an even further hit, officials commenced pushing bad policies in order to signal their virtue.