RNs - Florida

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Gables Hospital nurses vote to join union

Miami Herald, March 30, 2007
Nurses and other employees at Coral Gables Hospital, a Tenet facility, have voted to join the SEIU Florida Healthcare Union, the union announced Friday. The results of the vote were revealed to the 316 employees on Thursday. The hospital becomes the ninth group of hospital workers in 15 months to unite in SEIU-FHU. Employees at two other Tenet hospitals in South Florida, St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach and North Shore Medical Center in Miami, are also members of SEIU-FHU. SEIU-FHU now represents more than 16,000 hospital and long-term care employees. In the past 15 months, the union says nearly 5,000 workers have joined the Florida union. © 2007 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.

Jury awards $990K to Florida nurses

Associated Press, January 27, 2007 Panama City - A jury has awarded nearly $1 million to 12 female nurses, concluding that Florida corrections officials condoned sexual harassment by male inmates, an attorney said. The nurses claimed they had been harassed on their daily rounds since 1997, including while examining inmates and delivering medicine. "It is a magnificent verdict that finally provides justice for these women, who have complained hard and loud for years with no one in the prison system listening or providing relief whatsoever," said Wes Pittman, an attorney for one of the nurses. ... Jury

Nurses at Blake Medical vote to unionize

Donna Wright, Bradenton Herald, October 12, 2006 Bradenton - Blake Medical Center employees have voted to unionize. The vote on Tuesday was to join Service Employees International Union, an organization of more than 1.8 million members nationwide. Confirmation of the result was made this morning. In balloting, registered nurses and other hospital workers, who provide care and services for patients at Blake, voted 369 to 140 in favor of forming a union to give workers at Blake a new voice about patient care and career issues at the hospital, said Elizabeth Buchanan, the union's communications director. ... Nurses

Area nurses targeted by labor union

Organizers have been meeting with staff at hospitals in Sarasota and Bradenton. David Gulliver & Devona Walker, Sarasota Herald-Tribune, September 22, 2006 A major labor union is courting nurses at the area's three largest hospitals. Organizers from an arm of Service Employees International Union have met with nurses at Sarasota Memorial Hospital and at Blake Medical Center and Manatee Memorial Hospital in Bradenton, nurses and hospital administrators said. Unions have reached out to local nurses before, without success, most recently in 2003 after layoffs at Sarasota Memorial Hospital. But this comes at what might be an opportune moment. Last week, SEIU claimed a win in a major contract with five California hospitals in Blake's chain. ... Area

Nursing shortage puts a strain on SWFL hospitals

Maggie Newland, NBC2 News, February 21, 2006

Lee County - Hospitals across Florida have a growing need for nurses and Southwest Florida is no exception.

"I wouldn't say we’re desperate. No one wants to hear desperate, but we're looking," said Mindy Wise, a nurse recruiter in Lee County.

Hospitals in Lee, Charlotte, and Collier Counties even offered Edison College money to expand its nursing program.

"We'll never satisfy the need for more nurses," said Paul Monagan of Edison College. ... Nursing

Fiscal triage for Munroe nurses

Ocala.com Editorial, February 15, 2006

Marion County is blessed with superior medical care. Health care experts routinely rank our two main hospitals - Munroe Regional and Ocala Regional medical centers — near the top of treatment facilities nationally, when compared to other hospitals their size.

But that care comes at a price, as Munroe Regional recently acknowledged. Munroe Regional, long considered the "community" hospital and the safety net facility for poor patients, already faced well-publicized crunches in providing emergency care and indigent care. ... Fiscal

Nurses Urged To Slow Down To Help Patients

Seminar speaker tells listeners to prepare for a "caring moment."
Robin Williams Adams, The Ledger, November 6, 2005

Winter Haven - On a busy day, with patients and doctors demanding attention, Jean Watson wants nurses to slow down.

Not for the whole day, just for fragments of time, like the moment before entering a patient's room or starting the work shift.

"Center yourself before going in to see a patient," she said Saturday at Winter Haven Hospital's annual nursing research seminar. ... Nurses

Local nurses travel to Conroe, Texas

Audrey Blackwell, Okeechobee News, October 9, 2005

After hearing the news of the devastation that followed Hurricane Katrina’s path along the Gulf states, many wanted to go and help this segment of the nation’s hurting people.

Such was the case for three nurses at Raulerson Hospital in Okeechobee. However, getting into the disaster zone was nearly impossible with airlines and road traffic cut off. ... Local

FHP Helps Docs, Nurses Turned Away By FEMA Reach Storm Victims

News4Jax.com, September 6, 2005

St. Augustine - A medical mercy mission to a Mississippi city ravaged by hurricane-ravaged almost didn't happen.

Doctors and nurses with HealthSouth St. Augustine Sugery Center said Federal Emergency Management Agency officials refused to let their group carrying staff and a trailer of medical supplies into the restricted area.

"'Go home, we don't need you,'" Kathleen Floyan of HealthSouth said they were told. "If it wasn't for our state of Florida Highway Patrolmen ... (who) told us. 'Follow us, we'll put you in this location.' They put us across from the Waveland, Miss., Police Department." ... FHP Helps

NBHD sends workers to Gulf Coast

South Florida Business Journal (Broward Edition), September 6, 2005

Health care workers from Coral Springs Medical Center and Seventh Avenue Family Health Center have gone to the Gulf Coast to help treat victims of Hurricane Katrina.

The North Broward Hospital District said the team arrived in Alabama, Aug. 31, and will be deployed for two to four weeks.

Two nurses and a physician assistant are members of the disaster medical assistance team, a regional group coordinated by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Disaster Medical System. ... NBHD

Limiting Nurse-Patient Ratio Is Vital

Elaina Mahlan, RN, Lakeland Ledger, July 11, 2005

In The Ledger article regarding Lakeland Regional Medical Center's opinions about nursepatient-ratio legislation, published on June 27 ["Many at LRMC Are Wary of Creating Strict Nurse-to-Patient Ratios," page A5], proponents of the bill and specific information about the bill were woefully neglected. ... Limiting

Many at LRMC Are Wary of Creating Strict Nurse-to-Patient Ratios

Robin Williams Adams, The Lakeland Ledger, June 27, 2005

Lakeland - California nurses convinced lawmakers in that state to mandate nurse-to-patient ratios six years ago.

Now Florida lawmakers are considering ratios, too.

Bills were filed this year in the House and Senate. Although they died, it's an issue Lakeland Regional Medical Center and other hospitals can't ignore.

Proponents say mandating nurse-to-patient ratios is a crucial step in improving patient care and making sure hospitals don't let staffing fall to dangerous levels. ... Many at LRMC

Bill prescribes nurse staffing

Brian Bandell, South Florida Business Journal, April 3, 2005

As hospitals warn of a nursing shortage in Florida, a labor union is becoming more aggressive in supporting a bill that would require hospitals to hire more nurses.

A union representing thousands of nurses is backing bills in the Florida House (HB 1117) and Senate (SB 1176) that would set a strict nurse-to-patient ratio in hospital departments and ban mandatory overtime.

Some hospital officials say it could force facilities to close. Nine hospitals in California cited similar legislation in that state as a contributing factor when they closed.

Florida's nurse vacancy rate is expected to rise from 7 percent to 33 percent by 2020, equaling a demand for 61,000 nurses, according to the US Health Resources and Services Administration. The average age of Florida nurses in 2001 was 47 and 13.5 percent of them were expected to retire by 2010.

Nurses fired for not working hurricane

Associated Press, September 9, 2004

Ormond Beach - A hospital has fired or suspended about 25 nurses for not working during Hurricane Frances, hospital officials said.

Nurses at Florida Hospital-Ormond Memorial were fired for not calling in, not showing up or refusing to work, while others were suspended for not completing a shift or coming late, said hospital spokeswoman Desiree Paradis-Warner.

She said critical care employees are required to work during a disaster under hospital policy.

"It's in each employee's job description," Paradis-Warner said. "We have to have caregivers here ... patient safety is our No. 1 priority."

As the hurricane approached, nurses were advised to work their shifts, she said. The hospital provided shelter for working employees and their families.

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