Tough medicine

  • Article by: CHEN MAY YEE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 19, 2010 - 3:20 PM

Nursing, once a job for life, runs headlong into wrenching changes in the hospital industry.

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ignacio5May. 19, 10 9:20 AM

the CEO received $103Million in 2009 for compensation while the employees took a 3-year pay freeze.

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boogawoogaMay. 19, 1011:30 AM

For some reason people seem to think health care can be streamlined as easily as automobile production or paying your bills online or calling overseas for customer service. People do the procedures in hospitals, real human beings. Do people really think droids from Star Wars are going to replace nurses? Do people want online nursing? I want a human being talking to me in a hospital bed not a video conference monitors. CEO's need to get a grip on their business priorities because nobody will be going back to a clinic or hospital that treats them like a product to be processed quickly.

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rlwr51May. 19, 1011:54 AM

if all of these nurses, along with the doctors, could get together and somehow set up and run their own hospitals to compete with these CEO run assembly lines.

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lovedumplingMay. 19, 1012:48 PM

With all of the commercial space now available at bargain prices, it would be very easy for a new hospital to set up shop, steal away the talented nurses and doctors, and run these debt-heavy, office staff heavy institutions out of business. Perhaps the unions should try to find financing for such an endeavor.

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djensen19May. 19, 10 1:01 PM

The STATE has rules about opening new hospitals (see Maple Grove Hospital) can't just find commercial space and hang out a shingle that says "HOSPITAL". UHC is an insurerer that is based in MN, but does not have plans directly within the state. Are CEO's paid too much across any industry- that is a whole different can of worms.

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reality123May. 19, 10 1:33 PM

Rememeber how the mechanics at NWA ended up. Came to the bargaining table with an appetite for a full steak dinner and all they were offered were what NWA couls afford, peanuts. They refused to eat and left, without a job. MNA, the public is not behind you and you are kidding if you think you have the carte blanche power in the future that you have had in the past. This will be intetesting to watch you being knocked down a few knotches.

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rlwr51May. 19, 10 2:00 PM

The difference might be that NWA has sort of a monopoly on planes. They are still squeezing out more money for less service/product and are still getting away with it because of lack of competition. It is pretty difficult to have a monopoly on all of the sick people.They may have manipulted local laws to their favor. However, we still live in a majority rules society and those laws can be changed.

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e51132May. 19, 10 6:38 PM

Nice comment reality123. With so many people out of work, now isn't the time for a union to stage a publicity stunt in an attempt to gain extra benefits or "improved working conditions". A walkout will cost hospitals lots of money which will be re-couped. As a patient, I like the boardwalk at Methodist. Now we know the nurses didn't pitch in anything to create it.

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bgmach3May. 19, 10 6:59 PM

the job market in general has turned to crap. Mostly because of the unending demand for huge stock payouts that only benefit a few. There are many businesses and sectors of our economic society that do not belong on wallstreet, medicine and healthcare is just one of many. Until wallstreet gets back to what it was originally designed to do more and more of this quick, more, more, more money attitude will continue to destroy our economic base. Go ahead, strike, for most whether it be healthcare, education, government whatever, eventually the well will run dry, then good luck. Join the ranks of the self or low wage employed with no pension, no healthcare, no guarantees and face each and every morning waking to only your own guts, determination and resources to survive. I'll say one thing, it sure does build character.

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ravenmxMay. 19, 10 8:45 PM

The other difference here is that hospitals could afford it if the top brass, the people that generally do nothing, were not pulling in millions of dollars in salary and bonus's. I think your wrong in the fact the public will not stand behind them. I for one would prefer better health care, enough nurses to take care of me and not being kicked out of the hospital in one day after a major surgery. The hospitals are whining they don't have the money, people are sicker and require more treatment, cry, cry, cry. Just like everything else if the people doing the work made the money and more of the money was put back into the business instead of the brass's pocket everyone could be happy. The best analogy I ever heard was if all the employees went on strike could upper management handle the job. No they could not, they wouldn't even know where to start. So why are they making millions a year, because they can sit on their keister and blow smoke up everyone else's.

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